Birth Weight

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Birth weight is a key indicator of the health status of babies.  In 2009, 30.6% of all babies born to Indigenous mothers in Queensland had low birth weight of less than 2,500 grams (see Table 3.4, below). Of these, 301 (12.4%) were Aboriginal. A further 65 (11.0%) were Torres Strait Islander and the remaining 25 (7.2%) were of both Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander origin. Torres Strait Islander babies are over-represented (Demosthenous & Demosthenous, 2011).  Table 3.4 Weights of Babies Born to Indigenous Mothers(a), Queensland, 2009    Birth weight(b)(grams) Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander Both(b) Total  No. %  No. %  No. %  No. % Under 500  18  0.7  4  0.7  1  0.3 23 1.7 500 – 749  10  0.4  3  0.5  1  0.3 14 1.2 750 – 999  14  0.6  2  0.3  –  – 16 0.9 1,000 -1,249  10  0.4  4  0.7  4  1.1 18 2.2 1,250 – 1,499  16  0.7  6  1.0  1  0.3 23 2.0 1,500 – 1,749  30  1.2  4  0.7  3  0.9 37 2.8 1,750 – 1,999  44  1.8  8  1.4  2  0.6 54 3.8 2,000 – 2,249  63  2.6  12  2.0  4  1.1 79 5.7 2,250 – 2,499  96  4.0  22  3.7  9  2.6 127 10.3 …

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Indigenous Women & QWWS

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A couple of years ago, a group of Aboriginal women were sitting around yarning about money and money management. An Elder, after sharing a story about  a job she had in her youth, where she’d worked as a domestic on a cattle station, suddenly stopped speaking, then said, ‘Come to think of it, I don’t think I got any pay’. In Queensland, from 1904 to 1987, the government withheld or underpaid wages of Indigenous workers (McGrath, 1997). Following the late 1800s, when the Aborigines Protection and Restriction of the Sale of Opium Act was passed, a large proportion of those monies were compulsorarily saved into government trust accounts. No consultation took place, and no consent was needed, because the passing of the Act denied the civil rights of Aboriginal people and therefore their rights as workers (McGrath, 1997). Countless numbers of Indigenous women that worked in Queensland were paid in rations or food scraps or old clothing (Demosthenous, Robertson, Cabraal & Singh, 2007). While some received ‘pocket money’ for their services, there were so many more who never received payment for work performed. In theory, contracts and permits were voluntary. In practice, refusal to work incurred physical assault, banishment to …

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Working With ICEPP

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Just reminiscing about some of our experiences and work over our many years in Griffith University’s executive office of ICEPP – Indigenous Community Engagement, Policy and Partnerships – led by Professor Boni Robertson. Professor Robertson is a Duwa Kabi Kabi woman and academic who worked tirelessly to open up opportunities for Indigenous Australians in higher education, and to advance the University onto the world stage on indigenous education. ICEPP News Issue 1, 2011

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Experiences with Money

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We worked with colleagues from the Smart Internet Technology Cooperative Research Centre – SIT CRC to conduct pioneering research into people’s experiences of money and money management. In the paper entitled Cultural Identity and Financial Literacy, we look at the way historical and social factors impact on financial literacy among the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The paper drew on a qualitative study of banking and money in Australia, and aimed to study money and banking from the perspective of consumers. Money and banking activities were placed within the context of social relations and cultural values. One of the frameworks for the study was that money is a medium of relationships, as well as a matter of finance. The focus was on issues of trust, security, privacy and identity, contributing to a user-centred design of technologies. The data presented in the paper focussed on face-to-face interviews and yarning circles. Preliminary results show that a history of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people’s experience of money and social obligation to kin and community influence money management. The results indicate that cultural identity shapes money management practices. The paper concludes by presenting recommendations to promote savings and money management practices that can fulfill one’s …

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