The Forrest Review


Download The Forrest Review


Preview text

Creating Parity

Seismic, not incremental, change is required and the time for action is now.

These solutions are not expensive and parity is completely achievable with

the strength of will from each of us.

Andrew Forrest

© Commonwealth of Australia 2014 978-1-922098-68-9 Ownership of intellectual property rights in this publication Unless otherwise noted, copyright (and any other intellectual property rights, if any) in this publication is owned by the Commonwealth of Australia (referred to below as the Commonwealth). Creative Commons licence
With the exception of the Coat of Arms, this publication is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia Licence.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia Licence is a standard form license agreement that allows you to copy, distribute, transmit and adapt this publication provided that you attribute the work. A summary of the licence terms is available from http://creativecommons.org/ licenses/by/3.0/au/deed.en. The full licence terms are available from http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/au/legalcode. The Commonwealth’s preference is that you attribute this publication (and any material sourced from it) using the following wording:
Source: Licensed from the Commonwealth of Australia under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia Licence. The Commonwealth of Australia does not necessarily endorse the content of this publication. Use of the Coat of Arms The terms under which the Coat of Arms can be used are set out on the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet website (see http://www.dpmc.gov.au/guidelines/). Enquiries regarding the licence and any use of this work are welcome at: The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet PO Box 6500 Canberra ACT 2600 Tel: +61 2 6271 5111 Fax: +61 2 6271 5414 www.dpmc.gov.au

Aboriginal ceremonies like corroborees were often held in short distance from our homestead so everyone could take part. There was never any discussion that their ability to lead in the workforce and enjoy a modern standard of living would conflict with the love of their culture. They competently conversed in both English and Indigenous languages. Since then, the ability of Indigenous people to be employed is not assured. Indeed, the disparity resulting from the large proportion of Indigenous Australians who are disengaged from the workforce has reached crisis levels—hence this report.
Andrew Forrest

Given the fact that there is no employment gap, or disparity, for first Australians who are educated at the same level as other Australians, the full force of our community leaders and governments must pack behind the achievement of parity in educational outcomes as a national priority.
We must doggedly remove all impediments, raise our expectations dramatically and pursue accountability for Indigenous education until we reach parity in outcomes between all Australian kids.
Andrew Forrest

Acknowledgements
I would like to extend my personal gratitude to the teams at Fortescue Metals Group and the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet and the many others who downed tools and put their shoulder to the review wheel at a moment’s notice and mostly with no compensation.
My deep thanks to Professor Marcia Langton, who welded the regular and spontaneous stresses of the review’s challenges around her demanding duties at the University of Melbourne.
I am indebted to my family, particularly my wife Nicola and my three kids, who for most of the time over the last nine months lost their father to compiling this review—not only during its writing, but during the rigorous travel schedule required to compile the collective wisdom that has gone into this document.
This review could not have been achieved without the tireless contribution and wonderful talents of the team from the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. I would particularly like to thank Kate Gumley, Dianne Hawgood, Richard Eccles, Jan Goetesson, Tania Rishniw, Kristen Saunderson, James McDonald and Matthew James; and I have particular gratitude for the courage and unselfish contribution of time of our Parliamentary Secretary to the Prime Minister, Alan Tudge.
Our treasurer, Lee Trewartha, and information technology experts from Fortescue convinced me that the technology for the Healthy Welfare Card was available to the world but simply needed implementation on a mass scale, and Peter Meurs assisted my management and implementation thinking greatly. Their time contribution was, however, minimal compared to that of my colleagues Christine Nicolau, Corinne Hay, Jan Everett, Claire Lego, Damien Ardagh, Blair McGlew, Alexa Morcombe, Tom Weaver and our head of Indigenous procurement, Heath Nelson. Heath’s experience in Indigenous procurement (for Fortescue’s $1.6 billion of contracts to Indigenous companies) has been invaluable to this review. External experts who contributed time freely, including Dave Faulkner (in remote education), Ric Simes from Deloitte Access Economics, and Michael Rennie from McKinsey & Company, have all earned our respect. I will be grateful if all of you could continue to respond enthusiastically if required during the implementation phase.
I am grateful to Fortescue’s entire leadership team who accepted the review team’s commandeering of all the main meeting rooms and support staff as we pulled together the final stages of this report.
My heartfelt thanks go to my Minderoo team, Hayley Martin, Marcelle Anderson, Matthew O’Sullivan, Michael Starr, John Railton, Graham Forward, Fiona Stanley and Nicola for your great contribution in many areas of the review—in particular, prenatal and early childhood education.
Finally, and definitely not least, the development of the Healthy Welfare Card on an entirely community contribution basis could not have happened without Eftpos’ Bruce Mansfield and Warwick Ponder, Westpac’s Claire Scott and Mark Tibbles, ANZ Bank’s Bryn Gaunt and Rohan Harrap, Commonwealth Bank of Australia’s Angus Sullivan and Ian Wunderlich, National Australia Bank’s Kate Cooling and Adam Lane, Woolworths’ Peter McConnell and Dhun Karai, Coles’s Robert Hadler and Conrad Harvey, Metcash’s (IGA) Fergus Collins and Richard Roose, and MasterCard’s Eddie Gobler.
Please accept my deepest gratitude.
Andrew Forrest
iii

Contents

Acknowledgements

iii

Introduction

1

Executive summary

3

Accountability for results

5

The package of recommendations

5

Why change is needed

6

The first Australians left behind

7

Likely life outcomes for first Australians left behind

8

Failure of the service system

9

Government approaches

11

Creating parity for all Australians

12

Key drivers for change

15

What first Australian leaders told us they should do

16

The need for an agreement between governments

17

The need for bipartisan support

18

Changes that benefit all Australians

18

Consultations and submissions

18

Summary of recommendations

19

Chapter 1: Prenatal, early childhood and education

19

Recommendation 1: Early childhood

22

Recommendation 2: School attendance

23

Recommendation 3: Improving educational outcomes

25

Recommendation 4: Stopping distractions to education

26

Chapter 2: The Healthy Welfare Card

27

Recommendation 5: Healthy Welfare Card

28

Chapter 3: Implementation and accountability

30

Recommendation 6: Implementation and accountability

31

Recommendation 7: Implementation

32

Recommendation 8: Agreement to implement the recommendations of this report

33

Chapter 4: Breaking the welfare cycle

34

Recommendation 9: Young people

34

Recommendation 10: Job seeker obligations

35

Recommendation 11: Breaking the welfare cycle

36

Chapter 5: Building capability, dismantling the cash barbeque and eliminating disincentives 37

Recommendation 12: Tax incentives

39

Recommendation 13: Employment services

40

Recommendation 14: Vocational education and training

41

Recommendation 15: Driver’s licences

42

Recommendation 16: Training in incarceration

43

Chapter 6: Incentives for housing and mobility

44

Recommendation 17: Housing

45

Chapter 7: Building employer demand

47

Recommendation 18: Government procurement

48

Recommendation 19: Top 200 employers

49

Recommendation 20: Support for employers

49

Recommendation 21: Public sector employment

50

iv

Contents

Chapter 8: Empowering people in remote communities to end the disparity themselves 51

Recommendation 22: Remote Job Centres

53

Recommendation 23: Local governance

55

Recommendation 24: Consolidating service delivery

57

Recommendation 25: Remote housing

58

Recommendation 26: Enabling leasing or freeholding of Indigenous land

59

Recommendation 27: Land access payments

60

Part 1: The wheel rim

61

Chapter 1: Prenatal, early childhood and education

62

What success looks like

63

Current approach to early childhood

69

Determinants of a healthy pregnancy

70

Brain development from conception to three years of age

71

Return on investment

72

Shifting government spending to preventative services

74

Being ‘school-ready’

75

A solution—integrated case management for mothers from prenatal to three years of age 76

Challis Early Childhood Education Centre—a success story

77

Results

77

Incentives for expectant mothers to access ante-natal care

79

Recommendation 1: Early childhood

81

School education

82

Quality education, school attendance and teacher quality are the keys

85

School attendance

87

Enforcing truancy laws

88

Achieving parity in attendance

89

Using family tax benefits to improve school attendance

89

Accountability for school attendance—paying states on actual attendance

91

Case management to improve school attendance

91

Better access to boarding schools and adequacy of ABSTUDY

92

Accountability for parity in educational outcomes

94

Proven methods of instruction in English and maths

94

Incentives for the best teachers

95

The role of principals

96

Recommendation 2: School attendance

96

Recommendation 3: Improving educational outcomes

98

Recommendation 4: Stopping distractions to education

99

Chapter 2: The Healthy Welfare Card

100

What success looks like

101

The search for a new approach

102

Empowering people through the Healthy Welfare Card

104

Smart payment system technology

105

How the Healthy Welfare Card would work

106

Introduction of the Healthy Welfare Card

107

Recommendation 5: Healthy Welfare Card

107

v

Contents

Part 2: The wheel spokes and hub

109

Chapter 3: Implementation and accountability

110

What success looks like

111

How governments can achieve massive change—fast

113

Paying for results and not process

114

The package of recommendations

114

Implementation is no smorgasbord

115

Taking this unique opportunity

115

Leadership for the implementation and measurement of successful change

116

Eliminating duplication through free access to data

117

An agreement between the Commonwealth, states and territories

117

What does success look like in urban areas?

120

What does success look like in remote areas?

121

Recommendation 6: Implementation and accountability

123

Recommendation 7: Implementation

124

Recommendation 8: Agreement to implement the recommendations of this report

125

Chapter 4: Breaking The Welfare Cycle

126

What success looks like

127

Young Australians on welfare: earn or learn

130

Mutual obligation and job seeker compliance

132

Complexity of the income support system

133

CDEP wages

134

Recommendation 9: Young people

135

Recommendation 10: Job seeker obligations

136

Recommendation 11: Breaking the welfare cycle

136

Chapter 5: Building capability, dismantling the cash barbeque

and eliminating disincentives

138

What success looks like

139

Taxation incentives (or saving the taxpayer $1 million per incarceration)

140

Pulling the market lever—creating and encouraging commercial power to assist

the most disadvantaged

141

Why tax free status?

148

Operating Work for the Dole on a commercial basis

150

Employment services

150

First Australian employment—Job Services Australia

154

Role of Work for the Dole and intermediate labour markets

155

Young workers

156

Job seekers with a criminal record

156

The vocational education and training system

158

Getting the basics right for work

163

Recommendation 12: Tax incentives

164

Recommendation 13: Employment services

165

Recommendation 14: Vocational education and training

166

Recommendation 15: Driver’s licences

167

Recommendation 16: Training in incarceration

167

Chapter 6: Incentives for housing and mobility

168

What success looks like

169

The social housing trap

172

Mobility for work

173

Home ownership

174

Recommendation 17: Housing

176

vi

Contents

Chapter 7: Building employer demand

178

What success looks like

179

Indigenous Employment Programme

181

Using Commonwealth procurement to create demand for first Australian business

182

Growing demand through government

184

Recommendation 18: Government procurement

186

Recommendation 19: Top 200 employers

187

Recommendation 20: Support for employers

187

Recommendation 21: Public sector employment

188

Chapter 8: Empowering people in remote communities to end the

disparity themselves

190

What success looks like

191

Employment services in remote communities

195

Keeping people active and engaged

197

Empowered communities leading the way

199

Backing local leaders to get local people into work

199

Opting in and earned autonomy

200

Consolidating service delivery

200

Recommendation 22: Remote Job Centres

203

Recommendation 23: Local governance

204

Recommendation 24: Consolidating service delivery

206

Remote housing

207

Recommendation 25: Remote housing

208

Land—the key to economic development and home ownership

209

Barriers to home ownership

210

Land tenure constraints

212

Northern Territory land councils

212

Land-use regimes in remote areas—prerequisites to home ownership

215

Land access payments

218

Recommendation 26: Enabling leasing or freeholding of Indigenous land

220

Recommendation 27: Land access payments

221

Appendix A: Terms of reference

223

Purpose

224

Creating sustainable employment outcomes

224

Programme effectiveness and costs

225

Appendix B: Consultations and submissions

227

Roundtable meeting attendees, 15–22 November 2013

230

Additional consultations

231

Submissions

232

Abbreviations and acronyms

236

Notes

237

vii

We must use the power of the market and business incentives to deliver the jobs to eliminate disparity and the high barriers to employment entry for individuals.
Are mainstream services being held to account? Are responsibilities being fully enforced and accounted for? Is there sufficient glare of public scrutiny on their performance? Not yet. And are they failing our first Australian brothers and sisters? Yes, but don’t blame them. We are all in a sense, at least by association, guilty of the soft bigotry of low expectations. Where this has translated into areas of very low performance—like, for example, very low, continuing and systemic school attendance—it may even be called the racism of low expectations.
Andrew Forrest

Preparing to load PDF file. please wait...

0 of 0
100%
The Forrest Review