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    There’s a problem obtaining data from indigenous people- they mostly don’t like research- they’re sick of it because it feels as though they have been giving and giving for more than 100 years but they perceive they are getting nothing of value back. Although professionals may be able to get people to return to a treatment centre several times to receive a series of vaccinations, they won’t return after 6 months to answer a few questions and have a blood sample taken- that’s research and they feel as though they are being exploited. Many non-indigenous Australians feel the same way but will return because they have grown up in a culture of co-operating with “the doctor”. So it is probably true that many services have been dispensed and dollars spent, but data gathering may have been difficult because its done in a “white way”. We need to find innovative ways of gathering useful data without seeming to exploit indigenous people. I know these days we aren’t all exploiting them, but they feel very much in the spotlight and they can see their neighbours are still ill and not living very long, so they probably see our data gathering as pointless. It’s not doing any good criticising the PM’s or anyone else’s report, imho. We have to find new ways of tracking progress or miraculously convince indigenous Australians to become perfect research subjects!


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