Red Cross has joined with leading health organisations to call for more to be done after new data shows an alarming rate of food shortages among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
Thursday March 26, 2015
Red Cross runs food programs in many communities
Leading health organisations have called for greater efforts to overcome food insecurity, with new data showing an alarming rate of food shortages among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
More than one in five Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people live in a household that had run out of food and were unable to buy more, according to new data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).
The data, from the ABS' Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey, reveals this is six times that of non-Indigenous people.
The report shows that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living in remote areas were more likely than those in non-remote areas to be living in a household that had run out of food and couldn't afford to buy more (31% compared with 20%).
Australian Red Cross, the Dietitians Association of Australia and the Public Health Association have joined forces to express deep concern at the new figures and what this means for the health and wellbeing of individuals, families and communities across Australia.
"These findings are troubling. They match the growing concerns from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff at Red Cross who are working in partnership with their communities and are alert to this growing problem. It confirms it's a complex issue that we must face together for any chance to effectively close the gap," said Melissa Gibson, Manager of Youth, Families and Communities with Australian Red Cross.
"Communities want to work on this and this week in Port Augusta the local Red Cross team convened a community forum on food security, bringing people together to identify local issues, actions and solutions. Creating effective solutions involves local people and can make an impact and strengthen culture, health and capacity. Local communities need to work on this but all levels of government and business must also be at the table."
More here http://www.redcross.org.au/files/20130323_Aboriginal_Food_Security_(ARC_DAA_PHAA)_.pdf