Australia’s Aborigines live 17 years less on average than other Australians, and a government pledge to spend millions more in their remote communities would do little to close the gap, rights groups say. Treasurer Peter Costello released May 8 budget documents promising AUD 127 million for Aboriginal health as part of a AUD 1 billion package to lift education and encourage home ownership and health among indigenous people. But almost four times more is needed to drag Aborigines off welfare and lengthen their lifespans, a report by a National Aboriginal organization and rights group Oxfam Australia warned. (Reuters)

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