Design and setting: An interrupted time series analysis of sales data in 10 stores in 10 remote Northern Territory communities during 1 October 2006 to 30 September 2009, which included an 18-month period before income management; a 4–6-month period after the introduction of income management; a 3-month period that coincided with a government stimulus payment; and the remaining income-management period.
Results: Modest monthly increases indicative of inflation were found for all outcome measures before the introduction of income management, except for soft drink sales, which remained constant. No change from the increasing rate of monthly sales before income management was seen in the first 4–6 months of income management or for the income-management period thereafter for total store sales, food and beverage sales, fruit and vegetable sales and tobacco sales. The rate of soft drink sales declined significantly with the introduction of income management and then increased significantly thereafter. The 3-month government stimulus payment period (during the period of income management) was associated with a significant increase in the rate of sales for all outcome measures.
- 1. Wild R, Anderson P. Ampe akelyernemane meke mekarle: “little children are sacred”. Report of the Northern Territory Board of Inquiry into the protection of Aboriginal children from sexual abuse. Darwin: NT Government, 2007. http://www.inquirysaac.nt.gov.au/pdf/bipacsa_final_report.pdf (accessed Apr 2010).
- 2. Family and Community Services Advisory Council (FACSAC). The impact of income management: NT emergency intervention. Darwin: Northern Territory Family and Community Services, June 2008.
- 3. Australian Government. Future directions for the Northern Territory Emergency Response: a discussion paper. Canberra: Australian Government; 2009. http://www.fahcsia.gov.au/sa/indigenous/pubs/nter_reports/future_directions_discussion_paper/Documents/discussion_paper.pdf (accessed Apr 2010).
- 4. Northern Territory Government Department of Health and Families, Nutrition and Physical Activity Unit. Northern Territory market basket survey 2008. Darwin: Department of Health and Families, 2008. http://www.aph.gov.au/house/committee/ATSIA/communitystores/subs/Attachment%20A%20%20%28sub98%29.pdf (accessed Apr 2010).
- 5. Australian Bureau of Statistics. National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey, Australia 2004–05. Canberra: ABS, 2006. (ABS Cat. No. 4715.0.) http://www.ausstats.abs.gov.au/Ausstats/subscriber.nsf/0/B1BCF4E6DD320A0BCA25714C001822BC/$File/47150_2004-05.pdf (accessed Apr 2010, link no longer available).
- 6. Brimblecombe JK, O’Dea K. The role of energy cost in food choices for an Aboriginal population in northern Australia. Med J Aust 2009; 190: 549-551.
- 7. Victora CG, Adair L, Fall C, et al. Maternal and child undernutrition: consequences for adult health and human capital. Lancet 2008; 371: 340-357.
- 8. Lee AJ, O’Dea K, Mathews JD. Apparent dietary intake in remote Aboriginal communities. Aust J Public Health 1994; 18: 190-197.
- 9. Brimblecombe J. Keeping track of healthy foods: towards improving the nutritional quality of foods sold in community stores in remote Australia. Darwin, NT: Menzies School of Health Research, 2008.
- 10. Arnhem Land Progress Aboriginal Corporation. ALPA FOODcard. http://www.alpa.asn.au/updates/foodcard.php (accessed Apr 2010).
- 11. Arnhem Land Progress Aboriginal Corporation. Nutrition updates (article). http://www.alpa.asn.au/search?Query=income+management&fromSmall=true&searchField=searchContentBody&searchWhat=searchAll (accessed Apr 2010).
- 12. Centrelink. Individuals. BasicsCard. http://www.centrelink.gov.au/internet/internet.nsf/individuals/basics_card.htm (accessed Apr 2010).
- 13. Australian Bureau of Statistics. 2006 census tables. Canberra: ABS, 2007.
- 14. Australian Bureau of Statistics. March quarter 2008 consumer price index. Canberra: ABS, 2008. (ABS Cat No. 6401.0.) http://www.ausstats.abs.gov.au/Ausstats/subscriber.nsf/0/49DCDFA75F9A633DCA25743300189391/$File/64010_mar%202008.pdf (accessed Apr 2010).
- 15. Australian Government Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs. Final stores post licensing monitoring report: 66 stores. Canberra: Australian Government; 2009.
- 16. Australian Government Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs. Report on the evaluation of income management in the Northern Territory. Canberra: FaHCSIA, 2009. http://www.fahcsia.gov.au/sa/indigenous/news/Pages/nter_eval.aspx (accessed Apr 2010).
- 17. Vos T, Barker B, Begg S, et al. Burden of disease and injury in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples: the Indigenous health gap. Int J Epidemiol 2009; 38: 470-477.
- 18. Australian Government Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs. Future directions for the NTER— discussion paper. 4. Individual NTER measures. A. Income management. Canberra: FaHCSIA, 2009. http://www.fahcsia.gov.au/sa/indigenous/pubs/nter_reports/future_directions_discussion_paper/Pages/individual_measures.aspx (accessed Apr 2010).
Publication of your online response is subject to the Medical Journal of Australia's editorial discretion. You will be notified by email within five working days should your response be accepted.