National Close the Gap Day sheds light on the many issues that still surround the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders. ANTaR says Australia’s universal health system has been failing First Australians for far too long.

In 2008, Closing the Gap was launched, a national framework that aims to provide a coordinated strategy to improve the health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. The Closing the Gap strategy works to seven target areas; child mortality, early childhood education, school attendance, reading and numeracy, year 12 or equivalent attainment and employment and life expectancy.

Each year the Prime Minister makes his Closing the Gap Report to Parliament and accounts for how each target is tracking.

After 10 years of Closing the Gap, the strategy has not had sufficient success in closing the health gap between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and non-Indigenous people.

In fact, after some early positive success, it appears that the life expectancy is once again widening.

With upcoming state and Federal elections, ANTaR suggests that this is a crucial time for the future of Closing the Gap and its place as a national policy priority.

How can you get involved?

Sign the petition to support the campaign:

As a supporter of the Close the Gap campaign, I demand that political parties commit to:

►Unfreeze funding for Aboriginal Medical Services and invest $100 million in a four year capacity building program to fill the highest priority service gaps
►Establish an Aboriginal Health Authority to oversee service delivery in the mainstream system
►Invest in healthy housing for Aboriginal communities by recommitting to a 10 year National Partnership Agreement on Remote Indigenous Housing, and reinstate the Housing for Health program to help eradicate third world diseases.

You can sign it here

You can also run an event supporting Close the Gap. Find more information here