Out of touch Minister should apologise for offensive remarks

Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs Rachel Stephen-Smith should apologise for her offensive description of policy initiatives endorsed by the ACT Indigenous community, Shadow Indigenous Affairs Minister James Milligan said.
During appropriations debate in the Assembly today, Ms Stephen-Smith ridiculed “18 fuzzy ideas” which were developed with Canberra’s Indigenous community.
The Canberra Liberals’ 18 initiatives to improve the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders were developed in consultation with members of the Indigenous community and have been widely endorsed by Indigenous organisations including Winnunga Nimmityjah Aboriginal Health Service and Gugan Gulwan Youth Aboriginal Service.
When the initiatives were released former Labor leader Jon Stanhope said:
James Milligan, opposition indigenous affairs spokesperson, consulted with the local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community including, most importantly, with Aboriginal community-controlled service providers and has developed a comprehensive package of policies that address the major gaps in services identified over recent years by the Aboriginal community.
“Describing initiatives that have been developed with the Indigenous community as ‘fuzzy’ shows just how out of touch the Barr Government is,” Mr Milligan said.
“Far from fuzzy, these initiatives address serious government shortcomings across health, education, justice and more.
“After 18 years of Labor, outcomes for the ACT’s Indigenous community have only deteriorated. To make it worse, the Barr Government has stopped listening to the concerns repeatedly raised by leaders in the Indigenous community.
“Ms Stephen-Smith should apologise to the Indigenous community for her offensive remarks,” Mr Milligan said.