Unequivocally, the efforts to enhance employment and economic opportunities for indigenous Australians by mining companies, as well as by Marcia Langton, are to be applauded, but the cruel reality is that thousands of indigenous people still live in abject poverty where violence, alcohol and drug abuse and suicide are sadly commonplace. The polemic of the 1970s that our First Australians are downtrodden and oppressed may no longer be valid for the fortunate employees in the Pilbara etc, but so many others still experience the same disadvantage of decades, even centuries past.

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