NSW Woman of Year Urges Fed Gov to End 30yrs of Financial Abuse of First Nations

Save Sorry Business Coalition (supported by CHOICE)

Today, the NSW Premier’s 2023 Woman of the Year and Aboriginal Woman of the Year, Lynda Edwards, issued an urgent plea to the Federal Minister for Indigenous Affairs Linda Burney to resolve the collapse of ACBF/Youpla funeral insurance through a ‘fair and culturally-appropriate response’ in the May Budget.

Ms Edwards is a member of the Save Sorry Business Coalition and has met with Minister Burney and other federal MPs a number of times over the past year to carry the voices of people victimised by Youpla to the Australian Parliament.

“Youpla targeted vulnerable First Nations families. They lied about being an Aboriginal business and preyed on cultural values around family, community and the importance of Sorry Business in social and spiritual life. They pressured mums into buying funeral insurance for their babies and small children.”

“Federal and state governments and regulators knew what this company was doing and chose not to stop them. They approved Youpla for Centrepay and let them use it as a marketing and payments platform to steal money from First Nations households who were trying to do the right thing by their families and culture.”

“This kind of exploitation of First Nations people and culture is completely unacceptable and now is the time to try and make it right for the tens of thousands of families who were harmed. I respect Minister Burney’s commitment to making this right and know she will listen to First Nations voices who have been consulted about what a culturally appropriate resolution would look like.”

“I have asked Minister Burney to ensure that the Federal Government provides culturally appropriate options and real choice to people who have lost their money. That means providing options including refunds, replacement policies and saving products. It doesn’t mean a one-size-fits-all solution devised by bureaucrats in Canberra.”

One Youpla policyholder put it this way:

“We made good choices to keep our culture, yet we were harmed. Give us back our freedom of choice and empower us to plan and pay for our sacred ceremonies with our own money.”

The Save Sorry Business Coalition will be holding a Day of Healing on Monday 27 March at the Aboriginal Tent Embassy and a Day of Action on 28 March at Parliament House in Canberra.

Lynda Edwards and others harmed by Youpla/ACBF are

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