While the nation is now transfixed by the battle to contain the new outbreak of COVID-19 cases an equally important but longer-term challenge faces the national cabinet on policy towards Indigenous Australians.
In the next few months, state and territory leaders and the federal government will have to finalise a new 10-year strategy for closing the gap of disadvantage between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and the rest of the community.
The previous 10-year agreement, which ended in 2018, set eight targets concerning issues such as Indigenous literacy and infant mortality, but the federal government report cards published each year were a litany of failure. Australia achieved only two of the eight goals. The sense of disillusion was on display at the Black Lives Matter protests across the country a month ago.
After more than a year of consultation, Indigenous affairs ministers and Indigenous community groups, represented by a body known as the Coalition of Peaks, approved a new draft plan on Friday that will now be sent to heads of government. Only the roughest details have so far been released, suggesting there is still some arguing ahead.