The Corporations (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) Bill 2005 Cth: Coming Soon to a Community Organisation Near You

Indigenous Law Centre, University of New South Wales
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Indigenous Law Bulletin, 2006, 6 (19), pp. 13 - 16
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In June 2005, the Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Amanda Vanstone, announced that the Corporations (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) Bill 2005 (Cth) (`CATSIB) would replace the Aboriginal Councils and Associations Act 1976 (Cth) (`ACAA). Senator Vanstone described the CATSIB as a response to Indigenous demands for greater scrutiny of community organisations: Indigenous people expect their corporations to provide the best possible services and they are sick and tired of being the victims of unscrupulous or incompetent administrators. This Bill is an important part of the Governments reforms and will ensure that Aboriginal people get a better deal and better value for money.[1] This paper will argue that the CATSIB is more likely to frustrate Indigenous organisations than deliver `a better deal. Although the Bill has some positive features, it is a complex regime that has the potential to usurp Indigenous self-determination. This paper will be divided into two parts. Part One will discuss the history of the ACAA and deficiencies identified by various reviews. Part Two will analyse key provisions of the CATSIB.
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