11 March 1996 - 3 December 2007
Transcript No. 2000/111
SUBJECTS: Aboriginal reconciliation
Mr Costello its a very important day, how important is this for the path to reconciliation?
Oh look I think its been a great day, a lot of people have turned out to show that theyre in favour of reconciliation. That they want to put an end to division and support friendship between indigenous and non-indigenous people. I think its been a happy day.
And whats the next step now politically? Theres talk now, its really now in Government hands to do something.
Well I think the important thing is to keep that sense of goodwill and to ensure that theres unity and the debate doesnt polarise between extremists on the left and extremists on the right. And to make sure that we go forward, particularly with practical reconciliation. Theres still so much to be done in areas of health and housing and improving living standards for indigenous people. That this is where a Government can make a very direct contribution.
So its a very important step, but a long way to go.
Look this is a step. The public says that its in favour of reconciliation but its still a question of improving conditions on the ground, practical reconciliation in relation to health, housing, standards of living.