Innovative policy, research and on-the-ground reforms are the lifeblood elements of Cape York Partnership, an organisation dedicated to realising the goals of the Cape York Agenda – a radical reform vision that aims to transform the lives of Cape York Indigenous people.

Each policy and operational area of the Cape York Partnership is like a cog in an engine – each plays an important role in the functioning of the machine that drives our reform agenda.

Our cogs are:

employmentEmployment and Economic Opportunity

It is only with economic development and participation that true empowerment comes – this way, Indigenous people will overcome disadvantage and achieve self-determination.

landLand Reform and Home Ownership

Land reform continues to be essential to achieve the economic development, home ownership, and conservation aspirations of Indigenous land holders.  One of the main policy foci of Cape York Partnership is to lift the dismal rate of Indigenous home ownership from its current level of 5.6% to closer to the national non-indigenous average of 72%. Land reform and home ownership is critical to Indigenous landholders, and essential to the economic and social wellbeing of families.


Education is the key to opportunity and freedom. Our goal is for Indigenous people from Cape York to be engaged in high quality primary education in community, and begin their orbiting journey in secondary school to access good education opportunities elsewhere.


Building leadership is an essential cog in the reform agenda. Our leaders help transition Cape York communities from dysfunction to harmony. Empowered Indigenous leaders make decisions that help their families and their communities overcome disadvantage.

welfare Welfare Reform

Tackling the scourge of passive welfare is one of our powerful reforms. We believe in the right of individuals to take responsibility for their own lives, and to have jobs that create self-respect and economic freedom.

language-icon Language and Culture

Strong cultures and languages provide the foundation for growth, and for economic and social wellbeing. Strong and continuing cultural connection means people will return to their land, family and community after orbiting for education or employment, and will be well placed to make a valuable contribution at home.

individual-icon Individual and Family Development

Our work is devoted to enabling the people of Cape York to make choices and have opportunities that improve their lives and their children’s lives.  While we grasp the potential of individuals, we nurture the importance of strong and harmonious families.

recognition-icon Recognition and Reconciliation

Bridging the historic divide between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians is essential – we must continue down the road to social inclusion to support development. Recognition in the Australian constitution of Indigenous peoples, deleting race-based provisions and recognising Indigenous languages and culture will be an important unifying step for the nation.