Artefacts about Sharing payments
Believing Aboriginal people couldn’t manage their own money, the New South Wales Government monitored and reported on how Aboriginal people spent federal government payments once they started receiving them.
In the absence of government help, Aboriginal people often relied on their communities for support. Shirley Smith told her story of becoming an unofficial welfare worker while challenging stereotypes about those who got government payments.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people used government payments to gain further rights and freedoms. Activist Joyce Clague’s story reveals how payments became linked to land rights.
Researchers interviewed Aboriginal families in Adelaide about their housing, income, government payments and work as part of a wider study into poverty in Australia.
In a briefing to public servants, Dr Young discussed difficulties faced by remote Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory. She highlighted DSS servicing gaps that she believed worsened the situation.
DSS’s policy on supporting multiple wives from traditional marriages was unclear in the late 1980s. Research into the issue suggested solutions.