ANZ has released a discussion paper with the objective of providing a framework for discussion about what ANZ might do to assist in improving the level of home ownership by Indigenous Australians. The paper is available on the ANZ website for download in PDF format – www.anz.com/Documents/AU/values/AN5324HMIAV13online.pdf - and comment has been invited until 30 September on the issues raised in the paper. The paper states that, “In Australia, 71 per cent of the population live in a home that is owned by themselves or a family member. This level is marginally above other developed economies”. But, in Australia, home ownership by Indigenous people is low – just 28 per cent (ABS, 2002). This is also low compared with home ownership by indigenous peoples in the United States (59 per cent), Canada (41 per cent) and New Zealand (50 per cent).
ANZ research has identified that Indigenous Australians are the predominant group of people consistently associated with financial exclusion (Chant Link, 2004). Specifically, this financial exclusion is represented by: poor access to fair, safe and appropriate financial products and services; low understanding of financial matters; and greater likelihood of experiencing financial difficulty.
When members of our society are excluded from accessing appropriate financial services – as a result of a combination of social, economic, behavioural and structural factors – it would seem likely that the market is under-served and individual aspirations not met. There also exists a strong relationship between financial exclusion and other elements of social exclusion, including health, education, employment and broader economic exclusion (Chant Link, 2004).
ANZ has also recently announced that it will be conducting a series of workshops around the country to seek views of interested parties on the paper and on how it can assist in improving the level of home ownership by Indigenous Australians. All workshops will commence at 1:30 pm and run for approximately two hours on the following dates
* Melbourne: 4 September 2007
* Adelaide: 6 September 2007
* Canberra: 24 September 2007
* Brisbane: 2 October 2007
* Sydney: 4 October 2007
* Darwin: 9 October 2007
* Perth: 17 October 2007
Members wishing to participate in one of these workshops or otherwise provide feedback on the paper should contact Adam Mooney, ANZ’s Head of Community Development Finance at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 03 9273 4350.
Aug. 27, 2007
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