A strong law and order platform greatly helped to secure victory for the Country Liberals on August 25, 2012. Today, 156 days later, nothing substantial has been done by the new government about Alice's most troublesome problem: out of control crime and vandalism by young people whose parents – with impunity – are running away from their responsibilities. Robyn Lambley (pictured), the Minister for Children and Families (and Central Australia!), seems to be doing little about it. COMMENT by ERWIN CHLANDA.
UPDATE Jan 29, 2pm
Minister Lambley has issued a media release following the publication in the Alice Springs News Online about Cr Melky's initiative, saying she "has ruled out the introduction of a blanket curfew for Alice Springs.
"A multi-pronged approach is the most effective and preferred way to manage law and order issues in the town," Ms Lambley said.
“I have been on the record many times stating a short term curfew for children would only be considered as a last resort in the face of unabated anti-social behaviour and crime."
"Meanwhile, aldermen also resolved to write to the Territory Government, requesting implementation of a Night Time Youth Strategy, which would see taken into protective care unsupervised children 15 years and under on the streets between 10pm and 5am.
"The model being proposed by Ald Robyn Lambley is similar to the one in operation in Northbridge, Perth which has an emphasis on accompanying support services for the young people and their families."
Newly elected NT MLA Bess Price’s call for Traditional Owners to step up to the negotiation table is sound. In my opinion, too much government grant money is dispersed by people who have little idea of the inner workings of Indigenous cultural obligation and much of it builds a consultancy empire interstate, writes Russell Guy.
A bitter dispute has erupted between Alice sporting identity John Bell and former world marathon record holder Robert de Castella over a project that took four young Territory Aborigines to New York, to compete in the annual marathon there.
Two of the young runners, Charlie Maher and Caleb Hart, are from Alice Springs.
The project was featured in an ABC TV documentary and is receiving $1.2m from the Federal Government to make it an ongoing initiative, according to Mr Bell.
Member for Lingiari Warren Snowdon had helped to arrange the grant.
Mr Bell says Mr de Castella owes him $100,000 in wages for 20 months' work but Mr de Castella says Mr Bell was a volunteer and had declined to accept money so as not to affect a disability pension. ERWIN CHLANDA reports.
Picture by Dan Himbrechts, Adelaide Now. Robert De Castella with (left to right) Charlie Maher, Juan Darwin and Caleb Hart.