- Shared access to location specific data and information will support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and organisations to support the achievement of the first three Priority Reforms through:
- Priority Reform One: Participating as equal partners with government, with equal access to all processes and information to support shared decision-making.
- Priority Reform Two: Driving their own development by making evidence-based decisions on the design, implementation and evaluation of policies and programs for their communities in order to develop local solutions for local issues.
- Priority Reform Three: Measuring the transformation of government organisations operating in their region to be more responsive and accountable for Closing the Gap.
The Parties agree that disaggregated data and information is most useful to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations and communities to obtain a comprehensive picture of what is happening in their communities and make decisions about their futures. Priority Reform Four arises from the 2019 engagement process.
’Collect, analyse, use our own data to meet our own needs. It’s our information and we should use it for our own purposes as decided by us.’
(Survey participant from New South Wales)
Data and information sharing elements
- The Parties agree that data and information sharing practice elements between governments and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and organisations contain the following features:
- There are partnerships in place between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander representatives and government organisations to guide the improved collections, access, management and use of data to inform shared decision-making for the benefit of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
- Governments agree to provide Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and organisations access to the same data and information on which any decisions are made, subject to meeting privacy requirements, and ensuring data security and integrity.
- Governments collect, handle and report data at sufficient levels of disaggregation, and in an accessible and timely way, to empower local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to access, use and interpret data for local decision-making
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and organisations are supported by governments to build capability and expertise in collecting, using and interpreting data in a meaningful way.
- Government Parties commit to implementing the data and information elements, including to:
- share available, disaggregated regional data and information with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations and communities on Closing the Gap, subject to meeting privacy requirements
- establish partnerships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and government agencies to improve collection, access, management and use of data, including identifying improvements to existing data collection and management
- make their data more transparent by telling Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people what data they have and how it can be accessed
- build capacity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations and communities to collect, and use data.
- Government Parties will include in their annual reports information on action taken to improve access to data and information by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and organisations.
- By 2023, the Parties will establish data projects in up to six locations across Australia to enable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and organisations to access and use location‑specific data on the Closing the Gap outcome areas.
- The data projects will:
- support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to analyse and use regional specific data to help drive their own development and discussions with governments on Closing the Gap
- enable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and organisations to collect and access other data which they consider important
- be covered by localised agreements, consistent with Priority Reform One, between the governments and participating Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations in the region.
- The Coalition of Peaks will develop criteria for selecting data projects’ locations for consideration by the Partnership Working Group and provide regular progress updates on the projects.
- In 2025, the Parties to the Agreement will meet and consider progress on Priority Reform Four and make additional partnership actions if needed and the Agreement will be updated accordingly.