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Aborigines offered fuel in exchange for a wash

Extract from Australian Broadcasting Corporation - ABC Online, on 9 December 2004

The Federal Government is offering to provide petrol bowsers to a remote Aboriginal community if it agrees that children there will shower every day and household rubbish bins will be emptied twice a week.

The Federal Opposition has released a draft shared-responsibility agreement between the Government and the Mulan Aboriginal Community in Western Australia.

Under the deal, the Government would provide petrol bowsers and new health programs, while the community would agree to meet certain standards including getting children to school and making sure their faces are washed twice a day.

Labor's Indigenous affairs spokesman Kim Carr is not impressed. "I see it as being very one-sided, it is unbalanced and it would appear all the obligation is on one side of the community," he said.

He has told the ABC's "AM" program that it is an issue the National Indigenous Council should be raising, when it meets senior government ministers today.

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