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The path forward

To achieve better outcomes for First Nations peoples living in remote Australia and equitable achievement of the Closing the Gap Priority Reforms, Commonwealth agencies have identified the need to pursue strategies tailored to the specific needs of remote Australia. The Remote Australia Working Group, comprised of members from all relevant agencies, has been formed to progress this work.

Remote communities experience unique, additional barriers to food security by nature of their geographic isolation and lower-on-average incomes compared to urban or regional centres. Cross‑portfolio collaboration and placed-based approaches are essential to improve remote food systems. Food secure remote communities will see progress against all Closing the Gap Outcomes, particularly education, health and wellbeing outcomes (Outcomes 1, 2, 4, 5, 13, 14).

Structural changes in line with Priority Reform Three, improving accountability of government organisations and responding to the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in remote Australia, are the focus of the Remote Australia Working Group.

However, it is noted that the Remote Australia Working Group’s actions will also encompass other Priority Reforms, resulting in cross-cutting outcomes in remote Australia in future years.

Priority actions

Remote food security

The Commonwealth is working in partnership with jurisdictions and First Nations Health Peaks to develop a National Strategy for Food Security in Remote First Nations Communities (the Strategy). Consultation in 2023 will refine Strategy detail and identify areas for immediate implementation.

The Strategy responds directly to Recommendation 10 of the 2020 House of Representatives Standing Committee on Indigenous Affairs Inquiry Report on food pricing and food security in remote Indigenous communities (HORSCIA Report). Development will shape actions in response to other HORSCIA Report recommendations as well as provide a coordinated national approach to address emerging and priority issues.

Remote Australia Framework

The priority of the Remote Australia Working Group is to develop a Remote Australia Framework to embed the Priority Reforms, comprised of interconnected actions that will lay the foundations for deeper engagement, partnership and shared decision-making in remote Australia.

Summary of new actions

ActionMinister ResponsibleDelivery Timeframe
National Strategy for Food Security in Remote First Nations CommunitiesMinister for Indigenous Australians2023-2025

*A full appendix of new and existing measures being undertaken by the Commonwealth to support Closing the Gap efforts is on the NIAA website, at Closing the Gap implementation measures.


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