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Indigenous home ownership policies and Yarrabah

As of 1 January 2015 residents of Indigenous towns in Queensland have the option to buy their homes and convert communal land to freehold. Many want ‘the great Australian dream’, but it will extinguish native title and may expose communities to the open real estate market for the first time.

Indigenous communities in Queensland are being given the option of converting communal land to freehold title in a move that some fear will erode native title.

It’s the latest step in a nation-wide policy to encourage private home ownership on communal land in Indigenous communities, with the objective of tackling overcrowding.

Queensland has been encouraging people to apply for 99-year leases in more than 30 Indigenous communities as part of a program to get people to buy back their rented government-built homes.

It’s been a slow process.

This is a link to an audio of a Background Briefing on ABC National, 2.5.15, presented by Ian Townsend.


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