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Working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples

2023-24 Budget: Investing in a better future for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People

2023-24 Budget: Investing in a better future for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People

Indigenous Affairs
Tuesday, 09 May 2023

National Indigenous Australians Agency

A graphic image that displays the Commonwealth Crest, followed by the title, Budget 2023-24. On the right hand side of the graphic it reads, 'To find out more visit'.

On Tuesday 9 May 2023, the Treasurer, the Hon Dr Jim Chalmers MP, handed down the 2023–24 Federal Budget.

The 2023–24 Budget provides a series of measures to make a practical difference, help close the gap and deliver a better future, working together with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians.

These measures include a new investment to support the landmark plan for A Better, Safer Future for Central Australia

Uluru Statement from the Heart

  • An extension to existing funding to enable the investment of $20 million to progress Regional Voice arrangements, to ensure that voices in remote and regional communities are heard.

National Agreement on Closing the Gap

  • A whole-of government investment into strategic priorities for Closing the Gap over the next 12 to 18 months as part of the 2023 Implementation Plan, committing $424 million of additional spending.

Better Health for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People

  • $3.5 billion to triple the bulk billing incentive to support more doctors to bulk bill consultations for children under the age of 16 and Commonwealth concession card holders. This will have a positive impact for the over 310,000 First Nations concession card holders.
  • $141.2 million to expand the Tackling Indigenous Smoking program to prevent the uptake and reduce the prevalence of vaping.
  • $57.3 million to extend COVID-19 testing and vaccinations for First Nations Australians to 30 June 2024.
  • $238.5 million to improve First Nations cancer outcomes through building capability and growing the healthcare workforce.
  • $28.2 million to support the delivery of 30 dialysis units for First Nations peoples in regional and remote Australia with end-stage kidney disease.
  • $16.7 million to promote increased uptake of health assessments by First Nations people, which has reduced since the start of COVID-19. This will assist more First Nations people to receive essential support for the management of chronic and mental health conditions.
  • $1.4 million to expand the delivery of the Strong Born program to provide information about fetal alcohol spectrum disorder.
  • $10.5 million to boost mental health support for First Nations people in the lead up to, during and following the referendum to recognise First Nations people. This initiative will promote wellbeing and provide additional mental health support for First Nations people, including in regional and remote areas.

Jobs and Education

  • A further $32.8 million to continue support for the Clontarf Foundation to continue to engage First Nations young men in school through sport.
  • $38.4 million to support high quality and culturally appropriate education for First Nations boys and girls in remote areas. The Government will pilot community-led models for more culturally appropriate distance learning for First Nations students.
  • $21.6 million to extend the Indigenous Boarding Providers Grants Program for one year. Boarding providers give rural and remote First Nations students the opportunity to complete schooling away from home and currently supports around 2,300 students in around 50 boarding school providers and includes wrap-around supports to boost students' success. 
  • The Government will replace the Community Development Program with a new and improved program to support job seekers in remote Australia. $97.7 million is being provided to support development of a New Jobs Program trial and to meet the sustained service demand that arose during COVID-19.

Improving Housing

  • $20.8 million over two years to arrest the decline of Aboriginal Hostels Limited (AHL). AHL is a critical provider of culturally safe accommodation enabling First Nations people to access vital services, particularly people who need to travel to regional and urban areas to access these services. Funding will enable AHL to increase spending on meals, improve security and undertake urgent repairs, maintenance and capital works.
  • $111.7 million under a new one-year partnership with the Northern Territory Government to accelerate the building of new remote housing, targeted at addressing the worst over-crowding.

Clean Drinking Water & Food Security

  • $150 million over four years to support First Nations water infrastructure and provide safe and reliable water for remote and regional communities. Funding for the National Water Grid fund will target communities that do not have access to clean drinking water.
  • $11.8 million for the National Strategy for Food Security in remote First Nations communities to make essential food more affordable and accessible.

Tackling Family Violence

  • $23.2 million over four years to Support Families impacted by family violence and at risk of engaging in the child protection system, through delivery of place-based, trauma-aware and culturally responsive healing programs aimed at early intervention and recovery.
  • $68.6 million over two years for Family Violence and Prevention Legal Service providers. These providers have long-standing relationships with their communities and deliver culturally safe services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander victim-survivors of family violence.
  • $194 million to support the implementation of the new dedicated Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Action Plan which is part of the National Plan to End Violence Against Women and Children.
  • $11.8 million to develop a standalone First Nations National Plan for Family Safety, including to establish a national Peak Body for First Nations family safety.

A Better, Safer Future for Central Australia

$250 million to deliver the next stage of the landmark plan for A Better, Safer Future for Central Australia to improve community safety, tackle alcohol-related harm, and provide more opportunities for young people. 

  • $50 million for Central Australia community and regional infrastructure.
  • $40.4 million for On-Country Learning to improve school attendance, engagement and learning outcomes for First Nations students in Central Australian schools. These Schools will be empowered to engage with local communities and community-based organisations to flexibly develop tailored solutions that meet First Nation students' needs.
  • $23.5 million to expand the Child and Youth Assessment and Treatment Services and fund the building of a Health Hub in Alice Springs.
  • $3.9 million will be invested over three years (2023-24 to 2025-26) to develop a Youth Services Action Plan for Central Australia and support the provision of cultural camps for young people at risk to keep them engaged, connected to their culture and communities and to prevent emerging issues from escalating.
  • $10 million will be invested from the Regional Connectivity Program (RCP) to go towards project solutions that deliver new or upgraded broadband or upgraded mobile services to support First Nations digital connectivity needs in Central Australia.
  • $10 million to expand or establish justice reinvestment initiatives in Central Australia.
  • $9.2 million to strengthen community safety and support increased engagement and diversion of ‘at-risk’ First Nations youth.
  • $1.2 million for up to 5 new Junior Ranger sites that will be prioritised in Central Australia.
  • $7.5 million for strong governance arrangements to drive coordination and delivery of the Australian Government's commitments to Central Australia. 

This is in addition to the Australian Government’s $48.8 million investment in community safety announced in January 2023.

    A number of other portfolios across the Commonwealth are also prioritising Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, the details of which are available on

    Further information on the 2023-24 Budget is available on: