A New Partnership Forum To Help Close The Gap

19th May 2022

The Andrews Labor Government has reached another milestone in driving forward nation-leading reform with Victoria’s First Peoples through the creation of a new Partnership Forum for Closing the Gap.

The newly elected members of the new Partnership Forum will work with the Labor Government to make decisions on implementation of the National Agreement on Closing the Gap.

Victoria is the first state or territory in Australia to complete its implementation plan and commit funding to achieve the targets of the National Agreement on Closing the Gap to improve the lives of Aboriginal people. The New Partnership Forum will continue this important work.

Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations and Traditional Owner Groups were invited to nominate and vote for their sector representative.

A total of 156 votes were cast to elect representative member organisations for each of the 14 sectors under the National Agreement. The community-based selection process to elect sector representatives was run independently by Karabena Consulting Trust.

The 14 elected organisations of the National Agreement include organisations across health, housing, education, land and waters, and justice sectors.

Sector organisations will be joined by delegates from the Aboriginal Caucuses of Aboriginal Governance Forums – as nominated by each Caucus and senior departmental executives from across the Government.

Representatives on the Forum will regularly engage with organisations in their sector to ensure they are representative and accountable.

Victoria’s Closing the Gap Implementation Plan prioritises self-determination which is critical to developing a new relationship between the State and Victoria’s First Peoples.

The Government remains steadfast in upholding the partnership elements of the National Agreement on Closing the Gap.

The Government is leading the nation with its work towards Treaty, truth and justice alongside the First Peoples’ Assembly of Victoria.

Quotes attributable to Acting Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Ros Spence

“I am proud to announce the membership of Victoria’s new Partnership Forum for Closing the Gap and look forward to working closely with all representatives to improve the lives of Aboriginal people in Victoria.”

“Aboriginal people know what is best for themselves, their families and their communities. The new Partnership Forum ensures Aboriginal people and organisations are making decisions that affect their lives.”