While the tea, coffee, croissants and fruit flowed freely, so did
a fairly spirited at times conversation about issues ranging from
treaty to health to homelessness to Asia to stolen wages.
Mr Rudd said he was personally very aware and very concerned about
indigenous issues and said he thought a formal treaty between indigenous
and non-indigenous Australians should be a matter of priority.
ANTaR Qld Management Committee member Bruce Lillis said the event
had been a success.
"I think Kevin Rudd is seriously concerned that people are actually
taking these issues to him and I think that means he's actually
been handed a small offering of something that he can run with,"
"The main issue is treaty, which he seems to acknowledge is the
fundamental constitutional basis for any kind of material changes,
and the other main issue is the role that a Foreign Minister can
play in talking up treaty as well as the actual facts of health,
welfare and education.
"Other issues of primary importance were to do with grassroots
distress in his own electorate and how he as a local MP can engage
Participant Charlie Chambers said he was happy with what Mr Rudd
had to say. "There was a quite a few issues we were wondering about
and we're forgotten most of the time," he said.
"But what he had to say was good and we were happy with what he
"He should keep it up and they should say what they're going to
do before the election, instead of slacking off after it."
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