What is the Northern Territory Intervention?
On 21 June 2007, the Australian Government announced a ‘national emergency response to protect Aboriginal children in the Northern Territory’ from sexual abuse and family violence.
This has become known as the ‘NT Intervention’ or the ‘Northern Territory Emergency Response’ (NTER).
The NT Intervention was done in response to the 15 June 2007 Report of the Northern Territory Board of Inquiry into the Protection of Aboriginal Children from Sexual Abuse, titled Ampe Akelyernemane Meke Mekarle: ‘Little Children are Sacred’ , by Rex Wild and Pat Anderson.
Little Children are Sacred report
The Little Children are Sacred report found that child sexual abuse is serious, widespread and often unreported in Aboriginal communities. The report included 97 recommendations. The first recommendation stated:
That Aboriginal child sexual abuse in the Northern Territory be designated as an issue of urgent national significance by both the Australian and Northern Territory Governments, and both governments immediately establish a collaborative partnership with a Memorandum of Understanding to specifically address the protection of Aboriginal children from sexual abuse. It is critical that both governments commit to genuine consultation with Aboriginal people in designing initiatives for Aboriginal communities.
The report found that much of the violence and sexual abuse occurring in Territory communities was:
- a reflection of past, current and continuing social problems which have developed over many decades;
- the combined effects of poor health, alcohol and drug abuse, unemployment, gambling, pornography, poor education and housing, and
- a general loss of identity and control have contributed to violence and to sexual abuse in many forms.
Please click for more information on:
What is the NTER Legislation?
What measures were included in the NTER Legislation?
National Responses to the NT Intervention
United Nations Responses to the NT Intervention
NTER Senate Inquiry
NTER Time-line of Events
Rollback the Intervention
ABC Four Corners - Tracking the Intervention