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Councils in Australia's Northern Territory say lack of coastal cyclone shelters puts Indigenous communities at risk by Jon Daly November 17,2020   |  Source: ABC

Regional councils in the Northern Territory of Australia say a lack of funding and focus on building cyclone shelters is leaving coastal Aboriginal communities exposed to danger and displacement.

"At the moment, the NT Government is not taking this very seriously," Matthew Ryan, Mayor of West Arnhem Regional Council, said.

Councillor Ryan said he had been lobbying for a new cyclone shelter to be built in the remote Indigenous community of Maningrida, 500 kilometres east of Darwin, for several years.

"The NT Government should listen to the community's voices, and as a council that advocates on behalf of the community, we are carrying this message from the community, we're not making this stuff up," he said.

The NT Government said it was committed to providing safe cyclone shelters for remote coastal communities and pointed to a $5.5 million cyclone shelter built in the East Arnhem Land community of Ramingining in 2018.

The Bureau of Meteorology is predicting an average to slightly-above-average number of tropical cyclones for the 2020–21 Australian tropical cyclone season, which runs from November to the end of April.

That outlook is largely driven by the La Niña conditions in the tropical Pacific Ocean.

Roper Gulf Regional Council Mayor Judy MacFarlane

 

© 2020 ABC

Theme(s): Communities and Organisations.

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