The Importance of Engaging Experienced of Cross-Cultural

Interpreters for all Negotiations with Indigenous Communities

 

 

   

This article by Murray Garde flags lessons for all parties, including the NLC, which are involved in consultations with Aboriginal communities where English is far from being the predominant language.

 

Murray Garde is highly qualified for this assignment, and the NLC has total confidence in his expertise as an interpreter.

 

Linguists have taught us for a long time about the problems that arise from cross-purposes communication.

 

Murray Garde’s article demonstrates the value – indeed, in some instances, the necessity – of engaging an experienced cross-cultural interpreter for complex negotiations such as those that arise from profoundly important public policies that will have impact on the lives of current and future generations of Aboriginal people.

 

He has revealed the complexity of these negotiations and demonstrated that there are big holes in the understanding of Traditional Owners at Gunbalanya about the substance of negotiations so far towards the Commonwealth’s goal of securing a 99-year-lease over their community.

 

JOE MORRISON

CEO, Northern Land Council

 

Please click here to read the article by Murray Garde

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The plan to undermine the Land Rights Act

by Ian Viner AO QC

 

With the Commonwealth Government’s push for 99-year leases, the Forrest Report call for Aboriginal land to be privatised so as to be bought and sold, and attacks upon the Northern Land Council in particular over their defence of traditional ownership and their responsibilities under the Land Rights Act, the iconic 1976 Land Rights Act is under threat like never before.

 

Please click here to read the full article

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Open Letter from Rev. Dr. Djiniyini Gondarra OAM in Response to

the Prime Minister’s Statement to The Australian

 

(see: http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/early-british-settlement-all-bad-for-indigenous-australians-tony-abbott-20140923-10ksdm.html)

 

 

   

 

Open Letter from Rev Dr Djiniyini Gondarra OAM to

Tony Abbott, the Prime Minister of Australia

 

I would like to express my sincere gratitude to Tony Abbott, the Prime Minister of Australia for his courage in publicly acknowledging the terrible impact on Aboriginal Peoples as a result of early British settlement.

 

It is of extreme importance to us that we now work together for better outcomes and this can happen when a Prime Minister is prepared, as you have been, to recognise the pain and suffering that has taken place. This is a beginning point and we thank you for it very sincerely.

 

You say that we should be recognised as first class citizens in our own country. We believe this to be true and we also believe that determining our own future is our right. With your determined support we look forward to realising this in the not too distant future.

 

Your support for the recognition of Aboriginal Peoples in the Constitution is greatly welcomed and it is our wish that changes will also include provision of a framework for incorporating treaties as they are negotiated

.

 

 

Rev Dr Djiniyini Gondarra OAM

 

 

 

 

 

 

Archbishop Desmond Tutu Prays for Australian Aboriginal Peoples

 

On World Peace Day, 21 September 2014

 

 

International Day of Peace

 

On World Peace Day 2014, I pray for the rights of the Aboriginal Peoples of Australia to determine their own destiny.

 

It is a severe indictment on Australia that many of its indigenous people still feel that their culture and dignity are being eroded, and that they continue to be treated as second class citizens – 42 years after the country signed the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.

 

Aboriginal elders say that although the Aboriginal Land Rights Act of 1976 transferred control of much of the Northern Territory to Aboriginal peoples, the people never had the opportunity to draw true advantage from the land. They were ill prepared to deal with complex Western bureaucracies, and their efforts have been undermined by under-development and neglect.

 

The imposition of legislation generally known as the Northern Territory Intervention, in 2007 virtually stripped them of their voice.

 

Community councils have been closed down and management of many aspects of the peoples’ lives has been transferred to non-indigenous institutions. The exclusion of local Aboriginal perspectives from decision-making is directly eroding customs, laws, languages and land-use aspirations. Nearly 50% of the youth in detention in Australia are Aboriginal, although the Aboriginal population constitutes just 3% of the Australian population.

 

There are no first-class and second-class citizens on earth, just citizens; sisters and brothers of one family, the human family, God’s family. Our diversity is a Gift from God. It strengthens and enriches us.

 

All people, regardless of their looks, cultures and beliefs – including the Aboriginal Peoples of Australia – are equally entitled to dignity, to justice, and to the right to participate in decisions affecting their lives. I support those who have called for a Truth and Justice Commission for Aboriginal Peoples to lay bare the horrors of the past and, finally, commence a national healing process for all Australians.

 

More: http://nationalunitygovernment.org/node/1113

 

 

Other Links:

 

 
 

http://www.sydneycatholic.org/news/latest_news/2014/2014922_1617.shtml

 

http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/desmond-tutu-lay-bare-the-horrors-of-the-past-20140921-10jxuj.html

 

http://www.theage.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/desmond-tutu-lay-bare-the-horrors-of-the-past-20140921-10jxuj.html

 

http://nationalunitygovernment.org/node/1113

 

http://www.yolngunations.org/

 

http://mediablog.catholic.org.au/?p=3235

 

http://acmsydney.wordpress.com/

 

https://www.victas.uca.org.au/newsmedia/Documents/Archbishop%20%20Desmond%20Tutu%20Statement.pdf

 

http://au.pairsonnalites.org/2014/09/desmond-tutu-lay-bare-horrors-of-past.html?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=feed

 

http://www.anglicancg.org.au/news.php/134/bishop-desmond-tutu-prays-for-the-rights-of-australian-aboriginal-peoples-on-world-peace-day

 

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/sep/22/john-howard-there-was-no-genocide-against-indigenous-australians

 

http://caama.com.au/

 

http://www.watoday.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/desmond-tutu-lay-bare-the-horrors-of-the-past-20140921-10jxuj.html

 

http://www.stmichaeldaceyville.org.au/index.php?option=com_newsfeeds&view=category&id=93&Itemid=489

 

http://www.olmcmtpritchard.org.au/index.php?option=com_newsfeeds&view=category&id=93&Itemid=489

 

https://www.facebook.com/FirstNationsTelegraph/timeline

 

http://www.canberratimes.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/desmond-tutu-lay-bare-the-horrors-of-the-past-20140921-10jxuj.htmlhttps://www.facebook.com/adelaide.congress

 

http://stmarymags125.blogspot.com.au/

 

http://www.nirs.org.au/blog/NEWS/article/35948/Desmond-Tutu-announces-support-for-First-Nations-self-determination.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

Treaties

 

 

 

Watch this video on YouTube

 

The message from very many Aboriginal Peoples in Australia to the Australian Government is that the time is long overdue for genuine negotiation on treaties.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The book A Decision to Discriminate is now available as PDF.

 

Please click here to download the book (3 MB).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The National Indigenous Human Rights Awards 2014

 

 

 

Watch this video on YouTube

 

 

 

Rosalie Kunoth-Monks OAM

 

is presented with the first Dr Yunupingu Human Rights Award by Arnhemland Elder, Yalmay Yunupingu at NSW Parliament House. The National Indigenous Human Rights Awards recognises Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons who have made significant contribution to the advancement of human rights and social justice for their people.

 
 

 

Yalmay Yunupingu’s Speech:

 

“Politics, politics, politics. Policy, policy, policy. Changes, changes, and more changes. What’s next? Are we going to keep living like this and keep being used as a Trojan horse? As new Government gets voted, in comes new policy, “bang”, and then follows by the new changes “bang”. New jobs are created, people are put into positions and they often don’t have any idea how to do their job. Bush schools are criticized, and they say that Indigenous team teachers are inexperienced and unskilled to run bilingual and education programs in our own communities.”

 

Full text of Yalmay’s speech

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights:

Review of the Stronger Futures package of legislation

 

Source: http://www.openaustralia.org/debates/?id=2014-03-05.4.2

 

In the 43rd Parliament, our predecessor committee applied this approach to the examination of the Stronger Futures package of legislation, and used its 11th report of 2013 to set out its understanding of the concept of special measures and the circumstances in which special measures may be permitted or required under human rights law. In considering those measures described as special measures in the Stronger Futures legislation, the committee noted the importance of continuing close evaluation of such measures and concluded that the committee could usefully perform an ongoing oversight role in this regard. The committee recommended that in the 44th Parliament it should undertake a 12-month review to evaluate the latest evidence in order to evaluate the continuing necessity for the Stronger Futures legislation.

 

The committee has given careful consideration to our predecessor committee's recommendation and has decided to undertake a review of the Stronger Futures package of legislation, commencing in June 2014. The committee proposes to write to the minister and advise him of its intention to undertake this review, invite him to respond to the conclusions drawn by our predecessor committee in its 11th report of 2013 and alert him to the range of information the committee will seek from him and his department as part of the review. The committee proposes to report the conclusions of this review in 2015.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Survey
of Aboriginal Adults residing outside the Northern Territory on
The Intervention and Stronger Futures Legislation,
Constitutional Change and Treaties

 

 

Please click here for the Report

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Disallowance by the Senate of Regulations made under s28A
of the Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act 1976

 

 

Media Release Northern Land Council

 

Media Release Northern and Central Land Councils

 

Official Notification of the Senate

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Justice

 

 

“Justice will not be served until those who are unaffected are as outraged as those who are.”

Benjamin Franklin

 

 

In an excellent article (SMH 2 March 2014) by long-time Aboriginal advocate, Sol Bellear, he suggests that reconciliation has failed. This leads me to ask the question, “What is the basis on which reconciliation might be delivered?”

 

While I regularly read of new opportunities that are being promoted for Aboriginal people under the banner of ‘reconciliation’ and I greatly applaud them, at the same time I wonder if we have confused the meaning of the word itself and whether this could be the root of Sol’s conclusion?

 

 

Please click here to read the full article from 'concerned Australians'

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Treaties

 

 

25 Jan 2014 - Yalmay Yunupingu calls for Treaties

Yalmay’s speech in response to her husband, Dr M Yunupingu, being posthumously awarded the Companion of the Order of Australia

 

27 Jan 2014 - Warren Mundine on Treaties with Aboriginal Nations

 

28 Jan 2014 - Tony Abbott Open to Aboriginal Treaties

 

30 Jan 2014 - Yolngu Nations Assembly on Indigenous Treaties

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Changes to the Aboriginal Land Rights Act (NT) 1976

 

Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Amendment (Delegation) Regulation 2013 - F2013L02122

 

The new Regulation was registered on 12 December 2013. This was the last sitting day of Parliament for the year and means the changes will not come before Parliament before February 11, at the very earliest.

 

All information can be found at: www.comlaw.gov.au/Details/F2013L02122

 

The legislative instrument allows for Aboriginal Corporations to request that certain functions of the Land Councils be delegated to them. Where there is reluctance on the part of the Land Councils, the Minister is the final arbiter.

 

 

from: Explanation from the Regulation:

 

Subsection 28(3) of the Act provides that a Land Council may delegate certain functions and powers to an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporation.

 

Subsection 28A(1) of the Act provides that an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporation may apply to a Land Council for a delegation of certain Land Council functions or powers.

 

Subsection 28A(5) of the Act provides that a Land Council is taken to have refused to make a delegation if it has neither made nor refused to make the delegation within the period worked out in accordance with the regulations (or such longer period as is agreed by the Minister).

 

Subsection 28B(4) of the Act provides that an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporation may apply to a Land Council for a variation of an existing delegation to apply to all of the Land Council’s functions or powers that are delegable to the corporation, or to add specified delegable functions or power, or to add specified delegable functions or powers in relation to specified matters.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

In the Absence of Treaty

 

 

This book explores the current inadequacy of the process used in engaging with Aboriginal people, which results in control slipping away from them. It provides concise but incisive account from recent reports about the reasons for the ongoing and growing frustration of many Aboriginal people in the NT. In doing so it hints at possibly the only solution - treaties.

 

 

Past Book launches:

 

Sydney – 28 January 2014, 6pm for 6:30pm

Melbourne – 4 February 2014, 6pm for 6:30pm

(in conjunction with a screening of John Pilger's film Utopia)

Canberra – 6 February 2014, 5:30pm for 6pm

Darwin – 13 February 2014, 5pm for 5:30pm

(in conjunction with a screening of John Pilger's film Utopia

Adelaide – 13 February 2014, 6pm for 6:30pm

(in conjunction with a screening of John Pilger's film Utopia - Tickets $5)

Waurn Ponds (VIC) – 6 March 2014, 6:30pm for 7pm

(in conjunction with a screening of John Pilger's film Utopia)

Mona Vale (NSW) – 10 March 2014, 7:30pm (sharp)

(in conjunction with a screening of John Pilger's film Utopia)

Sydney - 5 April 2014, 1pm for 1:30 pm

(book presentation in conjunction with a screening of John Pilger's film Utopia)

Katoomba (NSW) - 12 April 2014, 12:30pm for 1pm

(book presentation in conjunction with a screening of John Pilger's film Utopia)

Ryde (NSW) - 28 June 2014, 1:30 pm

(book presentation in conjunction with a screening of John Pilger's film Utopia)

 

 

 

Book review by The Hon Alastair Nicholson AO RFD QC

 

 

To order the book please click here

 

Speeches and photos from the launches

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Hon Alastair Nicholson AO RFD QC

Answers Questions on 99-Year Leases

from Rosalie Kunoth-Monks OAM and Rev. Dr Djiniyini Gondarra OAM

 

 

1. Government is asking some communities to agree to 99-year township leases. What are the implications of signing a 99-year lease?

 

2. Government states that the community will still own the land even though a 99-year lease has been signed. Can you explain this please.

 

3. How important to Aboriginal Peoples are the protections in the Land Rights Act?

 

4. Under current legislation we are able to support housing and business development in our towns. Why do you think Government is asking communities to agree to 99-year leases?

 

5. Our people have great difficulty in persuading Government to negotiate with us in a culturally appropriate manner – that is, talking with the senior law men of our communities. Can you suggest ways in which this can be achieved?

  Watch this video on YouTube

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dismantling the Land Rights Act

99 year leases

 

 

6 Nov 2013

 

Statement by Rev. Dr Djiniyini Gondarra OAM regarding MOUs on township 99 year leases

 

I express my deep concern at the actions of the Abbott Government as evidenced by the behaviour of the Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Senator Scullion, in hastily procuring MOUs on township leases for 99 years in Gunbalanya and Yirrkala in recent weeks. He is quoted as saying that this was part of a blitz to encourage other communities around the country to sign similar deals.

 

Please click here for the full statement

 

 

Article in the The Australian: Overhaul township leasing system, says Northern Land Council (18 Nov 2013)

 

Letter from Rev. Dr Djiniyini Gondarra to The Australian (22 Nov 2013)

 

Response from The Australian (23 Nov 2013)

 

 

22 Nov 2013

 

Interview with Dr Gondarra

 

NT First Nations leader calls for rejection of lease deals

 

 

 

27 Nov 2013

 

Rosalie Kunoth-Monks OAM in Conversation with

 

Watch this video on Vimeo

 

Malcolm Fraser AC CH GCL PC,

Frank Vincent AO QC and

Alastair Nicholson RFD AO QC (by Video)

 

at Victoria University

facilitated by Jeff McMullen

 

 

 

NITV News:

 

Mr Fraser is among a growing number of opponents to the plan [to take 99-year leases on communities] who say there has been little community consultation to date.

"If the government is wanting 99-year leases, it goes a long way to making sure Aboriginals can no longer control their own land" Mr Fraser said.

 

Please click here for the full statement

 

 

Other statements:

 

Unravelling the Aboriginal Land Rights Act (NT) of 1976 by Rita Camilleri

 

The 99-Year Lease Attack on the NT Land Rights Act by Ian Yule

 

NIT 4 Dec 2013 by Geoff Bagnall

 

Senator Scullion peddles De Soto in Arnhem Land by Jon Altman

 

Dismantling the Land Rights Act (NT) 1976 by Catholic Religious Australia

 

No 99 year leases - No oil and gas exploration say Arnhem Land clans by David Wood

 

Nigel Scullion responds to criticisms about the 99-year-leases by The Stringer

 

Coalition stirs the ghost of Jimmie Blacksmith by Tim Kroenert

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Anti-Poverty Week

 

October 2013

 

To coincide with Anti-Poverty Week, the following books produced by ‘concerned Australians’ are now available for download:

 

 

This Is What We Said (2010) - 3 MB

 

Walk With Us (2011) - 1 MB

 

NT Consultations Report 2011 (2011) - 13 MB

 

Please click here to download the poster

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

John Pilger’s film "UTOPIA"

 

October 2013

 

The Premiere of Utopia was held at the London National Film Theatre (BFI South Bank) on Thursday 3 October 2013. A large crowd attended the screening and many signed a message calling for Treaties to be negotiated between Aboriginal Nations and the Australian Government.

 

Utopia is John Pilger’s new feature documentary. In his new film Utopia, John says that until white Australia negotiates a genuine Treaty with indigenous Australia, it can never claim its own nationhood.

 

The launch of the film in Sydney will feature special screenings at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) in Sydney, leading up to 'Australia Day' on 26 January 2014, followed by a cinema release across the country.

 

Further film screening: http://utopiajohnpilger.co.uk/screenings

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Community Living Areas

 

26th July 2013

 

We are advised through a statement on the website of the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA) that regulatory changes have been made to Community Living Areas in the Northern Territory.

 

This regulation Number 184 is made under the Stronger Futures in the Northern Territory Act 2012. (See ComLaw for details)

 

The explanatory Note states:

 

The Regulation modifies section 110 of the Associations Act (NT), as set out in Schedule 7 of the Regulation, and enables community living area landowners (both associations and Aboriginal corporations) to grant leases and licences for purposes consistent with the Northern Territory Planning Scheme without Northern Territory Ministerial consent if the grant is for a term of 10 years or less.

 

Purposes consistent with the Northern Territory Planning Scheme, including the following:

 

(i) commercial purposes, including a community store

 

(ii) purposes relating to infrastructure

 

(iii) public purposes, including the provision of essential services

 

See http://www.lands.nt.gov.au

 

This change was implemented following ‘consultations’ held between just fifteen selected Community Living Areas and Commonwealth Government representatives. There are more than a hundred Community Living Areas. The criteria for conducting consultations recommended by the Human Rights Commissioner (2010) and again recommended by the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights (2013) were not used and no transcripts have been provided.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights Report

 
 

 

June 2013

 

We learn from the Report that the Committee:

 

... sets out the committee's analytical framework for the assessment of human rights compatibility and addresses a number of issues of general relevance raised by the Stronger Futures package. It then goes on to apply this analytical framework to a number of the Stronger Futures measures on which the committee has decided to focus its comments: the tackling alcohol abuse measure, the income management measure, and the school attendance measure.

 

The report does not deal with the food security measures relating to the licensing regimes for food stores in certain areas, certain land reform measures, and amendments relating to the extent to which customary law may be taken into account in bail and sentencing decision, or restriction on access to pornography in certain areas.

 

Even with these limitations, the report reaches the conclusion that the Stronger Futures measures considered are unlikely to be ‘special measures’.

 

The committee is not persuaded by the material put before it by the government that the Stronger Futures legislation can properly be characterised as 'special measures' under the ICERD or other relevant human rights treaties.

 

The report identifies a series of concerns including the need to ensure the affected communities are engaged in the development of policy making and policy implementation processes, and are engaged in meaningful consultation – using the criteria as set out by the former Human Rights Commissioner, Tom Calma.

 

Ultimately, the report concludes:

 

The committee has indicated the importance of continuing close evaluation of measures such as these which are claimed to have a beneficial effect, and notes that the potentially disempowering effects of such measures also need to be taken into account in any assessment of human rights compatibility.

 

The committee considers that it can usefully perform an ongoing oversight role in this regard and recommends that in the 44th Parliament the committee should undertake a 12 month-review to evaluate the latest evidence in order to test the continuing necessity for the Stronger Future measures.

 

 

Please click here for the full report

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sixth Anniversary of the Intervention - 21 June 2013

 

 

Striking the Wrong Note

 

 

Aboriginal advocate Olga Havnen, in her Lowitja O’Donoghue oration, has asked a critical question. She asks what has been the psychological impact of the Intervention on Aboriginal people of the Northern Territory. It is surprising that so little attention has been given to this critical, yet in some ways tenuous, link before now.

 

Even before the Intervention began in June 2007, government had long planned a new approach to the ‘management’ of Aboriginal people in the Northern Territory. It was no longer part of government thinking that self-determination and Aboriginal control over land could be allowed to continue.

Please click here to read the full document

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

Keeping Them Home

 

The most recent data shows that the number of children being moved into out-of-home care in the Northern Territory has just about doubled since 2007. Two-thirds of these children are being placed with non-Indigenous families away from their communities.

 

Elder Rev Dr Djiniyini Gondarra, as spokesperson for Yolngu Makarr Dhuni calls for this trend to be reversed by increasing family support services in communities. He has written to the Chief Minister of the Northern Territory, Adam Giles, asking him for his support.

 

 

Letter from Djiniyini Gondarra to Adam Giles

 

We would like to thank all those who also wrote to Adam Giles in support of Dr Gondarra’s request. Your sustained support for Aboriginal-managed family support and preventative services in communities in the Northern Territory is important.

 

 

What Did We Learn from “Bringing Them Home”?

 

 

The Guardian: We have to stop the creation of another Stolen Generation

 

The Australian: Keep care for kids 'within family'

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Community Living Areas (CLAs)

 

CLA Media Release by the government

CLA Discussion Paper

 

Rather than providing certainty and support to Aboriginal people in Community Living Areas (CLAs) in the NT, the Federal Government continues its obsessive march to remove control from Aboriginal Peoples.

 

It is understood that current leases for CLAs need to be less restrictive, and there is evidence for this from some of the larger CLAs. The Federal Government, however, intends to use this opportunity to take control over future development in these areas through sections 35 (4) and 35 (5) to the Stronger Futures legislation which allow changes to regulations without consultation with owners and where their consent is not required.

 

Such loss of control will deny certainty for those living in CLAs and deny them the right to self-determination.

 

This is disgraceful legislation and in breach of Australia’s commitments under international law. The controls that have been set are arbitrary and there is no avenue for appeal.

 

 

The Stronger Futures Legislation on Land Reform

 

35 (4) Before making regulations for the purposes of subsection (1) in relation to a community living area, the Minister must consult with:

(a) the Government of the Northern Territory; and

(b) if the owner of the land that is the community living area requests to be consulted about the making of regulations for the purposes of subsection (1)—the owner; and

(c) the Land Council (within the meaning of the Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act 1976) in whose area the community living area is located; and

(d) any other person the Minister considers appropriate to consult.

 

35 (5) A failure to comply with subsection (4) does not affect the validity of the regulations.

 

 

Submission by 'concerned Australians' on CLAs – April 2013

Submission by 'concerned Australians' on Stronger Futures Land Reform - January 2012

Disempowerment in NT Communities Driven by Arrogant Policy and Inept Processes

List of Community Living Areas in the NT as shown on the FaHCSIA website

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Decision to Discriminate

 

Aboriginal Disempowerment in the Northern Territory

 

Through the use of direct quotation, this new book is an important historical record that focuses on the Senate Committee Inquiry into the Stronger Futures legislation. It shows how the Government decision-making process chose to ignore the views expressed by many Aboriginal people of the Northern Territory communities, in much the same way as has happened since colonisation.

 

 

Past book launches:

Sydney – 5 November 2012, 6pm for 6:30pm

Melbourne – 7 November 2012, 12pm for 12.30pm

Canberra – 13 November 2012, 5:30pm

Murray Bridge (SA) – 16 November 2012, 7pm

Adelaide – 9 December 2012, 2pm

Darwin – 10 December 2012, 5:30pm

(International Human Rights Day Celebration with Introduction to the book)

Brisbane – 12 December 2012, 5:30pm

Blackett (NSW) - 18 March 2013, 6pm

Mornington (VIC) - 12 April, 7 pm

(including Film Screening ‘Our Generation’)

Geelong (VIC) - 3 May, 2pm

Mona Vale (NSW) - 13 May, 7.30pm - 9.00pm

(The book will be presented as part of the event "An update on NT Intervention")

Mitcham (VIC) - 13 May, 7.15 for 7.30pm start – 9.30 pm

(The book will be presented as part of the event "Human Rights and the Northern Territory")

Shepparton (VIC) - 31 May, 6.30pm for 7pm start

(The presentation includes video clips and opportunities for questions)

Ryde (NSW) - 11 June, 6.30pm - 9.00pm

(including Film Screening "Our Generation")

 

Download the Book (PDF, 3 MB)

 

“A Decision to Discriminate” Order Form (PDF)

 

Book reviews

 

Speeches and photos from the launches

 

 

 

 

Djiniyini Gondarra

at the Adelaide book launch

 

Watch this video on Vimeo

Amelia Pangarte Kunoth-Monks

at the Adelaide book launch

 

Watch this video on Vimeo

Rosalie Kunoth-Monks

at the Adelaide book launch

 

Watch this video on Vimeo

 

 

 

 

Interview with Jeff McMullen

on Blackchat   Koori Radio 93.7FM with Lola Forester on 5 Nov 2012

 

 

with kind permission of Koori Radio 93.7FM

 

 

 

 

'concerned Australians' gratefully acknowledges the assistance of the
Mary MacKillop Foundation

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

 

Yolŋuw Makarr Dhuni

(Yolŋu Nations Assembly)

 

Statement from the second Yolngu Nations Assembly meeting, Maningrida
October 11th – 13th, 2012

 

Click here for the Statement

 

 

3CR Radio Interview with Rev Dr Djiniyini Gondarra and George Gaymarani about the Yolngu Nations Assembly (MP3)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stronger Futures and Associated Bills are Passed into Law - 29 June 2012

 

Response from the Northern Territory 27 June 2012:
Media release Yolngu Nations Assembly and Alyawaar Nation

 

Letter from Deni Langman to Politicians read during the Senate 'debate'

 

Hansard of the passage of the Bills through the Senate

 

Senate Inquiry Committee Report

 

 

 

 

 

Stronger Futures Legislation (and Associated Bills) Chart

(designed to be printed at A1 size)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Public Forum on the Northern Territory Intervention into Indigenous communities and the Stronger Futures legislation

 

 
 

 

from top left: Prof Jon Altman, Barb Shaw,
Les Malezer, Rosalie Kunoth-Monks and Gary Foley at the centre

 

Incorporating the launch of Arena Magazine’s
special issue on the NT Intervention

 

on 21 June 2012 in Fitzroy, Victoria

 

 

 

Listen to Rosalie Kunoth-Monks talking about the impact of the Intervention on her community (audio)

 

Speech by Jon Altman (PDF)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Press Conference on the Stronger Futures Legislation

 

in the Senate Courtyard at Parliament House, Canberra on 18 June 2012

 

Click here for the Statements made by Aboriginal, Church and Community Representatives

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Signing the Statement

 

 

Yolŋuw Makarr Dhuni

(Yolŋu Nations Assembly)

 

Statement regarding Australian Federal Government Stronger Futures Bills and Northern Territory Policies, to the Leaders of the Australian Federal and Northern Territory Parliaments

 

Click here for a copy of the Statement

 

 

Churches, Religious, Organisations and Reconciliation Groups

 

Calls to Abandon the Stronger Futures Legislation, and

 

Calls to Support the Yolngu Nations Assembly Statement

 

Click here for their Statements

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Launch of the report "Listening But Not Hearing"

by the Rt. Hon. Malcolm Fraser AC CH

 

The report, based on transcripts of the 2011 Consultations, was prepared by Jumbunna Indigenous House of Learning and the Hon. Alastair Nicholson AO RFD QC.

 

 

 

Audio recordings from the launch of the report on 8 March 2012

 

The Hon. Alastair Nicholson AO RFD QC (excerpts) (MP3)

Former Chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia

 

The Rt. Hon. Malcolm Fraser AC CH (MP3)

Former Prime Minister of Australia

 

Nicole Watson (MP3)

Senior Researcher, Jumbunna Indigenous House of Learning, co-author of the report

 

The Hon Ian Viner AO QC (MP3)

Former Minister for Aboriginal Affairs

 

The Hon. Frank Vincent AO QC (MP3)

Provost of the Sir Zelman Cowen Centre, Former Chancellor, Victoria University

 

 

Click here for a copy of the report (PDF)

 

 

From left to right:

Ian Viner, Frank Vincent, Malcom Fraser, Nicole Watson, Alastair Nicholson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The House of Representatives debates the Stronger Futures Legislation

Monday, 27th February 2012

13 March 2012

 

 

Statement supported by 28 Leading Australians

is sent to Julia Gillard, Tony Abbott and Bob Brown calling on Government to Abandon the Stronger Futures Legislation

 

 

Names of Supporters

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Senate request for inquiry

 

 

 

The Selection of Bills Committee referred the Stronger Futures Bills to the Community Affairs Committee on 25 November 2011.

 

 

The reason for Referral/Principal Issues for Consideration:

 

The Effect of measures and implementation plans, evidence of community awareness / acceptance. Assessment of intended and unintended consequences.

 

 

(See Appendix 8 of the

 Selection of Bills Committee
 Report No. 17 of 2011 (PDF)
 )

 

Senate Hearing at Maningrida 22 February 2012

 

Watch this video on Vimeo

 

 

The above video is a compilation from the hearing (13 min).

 

Click here for the full recording of the hearing

 

 

Transcripts of the Senate Hearings:

 

20/02/2012

21/02/2012

22/02/2012

23/02/2012

24/02/2012

01/03/2012

06/03/2012

Ntaria (Hermannsburg) (PDF)

Alice Springs (PDF)

Maningrida (PDF)

Darwin (PDF)

Darwin (PDF)

Canberra (PDF)

Canberra (PDF)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Watch this video on Vimeo

Stronger Futures Forum

held at Maningrida on

21 February 2012

 

 

Aboriginal people from West, Central and East Arnhem Land give their views on the proposed Stronger Futures Legislation

 

 

Facilitator: Jeff McMullen

 

 

This video was produced by NITV

(National Indigenous Television)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NT Consultations Report 2011: By Quotations

 

Consultations took place in the NT between June and August 2011, at the request of government. Ten of these consultations were recorded and quotations from them are contained in this report.

 

Launch & Press Conf. on the Stronger Futures legislation with
The Hon. Alastair Nicholson AO RFD QC and
The Hon. Frank Vincent AO QC
Wednesday, 15 February 2012 12:30pm in Melbourne (PDF)

 

“NT Consultations Report 2011: By Quotation” Order Form (PDF)

 

Download the book (13 MB)

 

 

Transcripts from the ten recorded consultations (PDF):

 

Alice Springs Public Meeting

Alice Springs Town Camps

Bagot

Darwin Public Meeting

Galiwin'ku

Kintore

Maningrida

Mutitjulu

Yirrkala

 

 

 

 

 

 

Videos from the Launch and Press Conference

on the Stronger Futures legislation

 

 
 

 

Watch this video on Vimeo

 

From the Introduction-

by Jeff McMullen

 

Commentary on the Proposed Stronger Futures Legislation -

by The Hon. Alastair Nicholson AO RFD QC

 

Watch this video on Vimeo

 

 

 

Watch this video on Vimeo

 

From the Commentary -

by The Hon. Frank Vincent AO QC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Opinion:

 

NTER Evaluation 2011

 

 

Prepared by 'concerned Australians' in November 2011

 

 

Click here for a copy of this document (PDF)



 

Cuts to Welfare Payments
for School Non-Attendance
Requested or Imposed?

 

 

Prepared by 'concerned Australians' in October 2011

 

 

Click here for a copy of this report (PDF)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Watch this video on YouTube  

No More! Enough is Enough!

 

Statement by Northern Territory Elders and Community Representatives
4 Nov 2011 (PDF)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Central Land Council, Kalkaringi, 26 August 2011 (PDF)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New round of consultations 2011

 

Letter from the Hon Alastair Nicholson AO to Minister Jenny Macklin  
27 Jun 2011 (PDF)

This letter was also signed by other influential Australians.

 

Media Release by Rev Dr Djiniyini Gondarra OAM   26 Jun 2011 (PDF)

 

Media Release by the Hon Malcolm Fraser AC CH GCL, former Prime Minister of Australia   27 Jun 2011 (PDF)

 

Media Release by The Anglican Diocese, the Most Rev Archbishop Philip Freier   29 Jun 2011 (PDF)

 

Open letter from the Hon Malcolm Fraser, the Hon Alastair Nicholson and the Hon Ian Viner to Minister Jenny Macklin   4 Jul 2011 (PDF)

 

Public statement re the Northern Territory Intervention   14 Jul 2011 (DOC)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Walk With Us

Aboriginal Elders Call Out to Australian People
to Walk with them in their Quest for Justice

 

The book will be launched in:

 

Melbourne – 30 August 2011 at 12.30pm

Sydney – 1 September 2011 at 6pm for 6.30pm

Canberra – 8 September 2011 at 5.30pm

Perth – 14 September 2011 at 4pm for 4:30pm

Darwin – 18 November 2011 at 6.30pm

 

 

Information about the book (DOC)

 

Download the book (1 MB)

 

“Walk With Us” Order Form (PDF)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHILDREN OF THE INTERVENTION - Aboriginal Children Living in the Northern Territory of Australia

 

Click here for a copy of this report (PDF)

 

 

This report is a complement to the report

"Listen to Children - 2011 Child Rights NGO Report Australia"

by the Child Rights Taskforce.


The Child Rights Taskforce is a coalition of organisations committed to the protection and promotion of child rights in Australia. The co-convenors of the Taskforce are NCYLC and UNICEF Australia.


Click here for a copy of the "Listen to Children" report (PDF)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Aboriginal Leaders meet
Navi Pillay in Darwin
20 May 2011

 

Leaders from 20 different communities spent several hours with the UN Human Rights Commissioner telling her of their concerns about the loss of their rights under the Intervention.

 

Thank you to those organisations who assisted in making this meeting possible.

 

 

Statement by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (PDF)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

Letter to UN High Commissioner for Human Rights

 

We would like to sincerely thank all who added their name to this letter to Navi Pillay, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

 

Just over 6,500 signatures were presented by Djapirri Mununggirritj to the Commissioner in Darwin on Friday 20th May.

 

Signatures were collected from every State and Territory and a large percentage were from NT towns and communities.

 

Letter to Navi Pillay (PDF)

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Further Conversation with Elders
held at the Melbourne University Law School on 7 Feb 2011.

 

Bringing you up to date with the impacts of living under the Intervention

 

Statement by Aboriginal Elders of 7 Feb 2011 (PDF)

 

Statement on Aboriginal Rights by leading Australians (DOC)

 

ABC Sunday night: Indigenous Australia: The Future (LINK)

 

Audio recording from the event (LINK)

 

Audio recording from the event (MP3)

 

NT Intervention coverage by the NIT (National Indigenous Times) (PDF)

 

 

From left to right: Dhanggal Gurruwiwi from Yirrkala, George Gaymarani Pascoe from Milingimbi, Rosalie Kunoth-Monks OAM from Utopia, Betty Pike, a Nyoonga woman from SW Australia, Miriam Rose Ungunmerr-Baumann AM from Nauiyu (Daly River), Djapirri Mununggirritj from Yirrkala, Rev Dr. Djiniyini Gondarra OAM from Galiwin'ku and Harry Jakamarra Nelson from Yuendumu

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

LOSS OF RIGHTS - the Despair of Aboriginal Communities in the Northern Territory

 

A submission to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination by ‘concerned Australians’ August 2010

 

Prepared by
Professor the Hon Alastair Nicholson AO RFD QC
Michele Harris OAM
Georgina Gartland
July 2010

Submission to the CERD by 'concerned Australians'

 

Click here for a copy of this report (PDF)

 

Rev Dr Djiniyini Gondarra OAM and Rosalie Kunoth-Monks OAM with Australian Racial Discrimination Commissioner, Graeme Innes at the UN

 

Report by Rev.Dr Djiniyini Gondarra OAM and Rosalie Kunoth Monks OAM (LINK)

 

Media Release by ‘concerned Australians' (DOC)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Concluding Observations report by the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
13 September 2010 (PDF)

 

 

Report by Australian Racial Discrimination Commissioner, Graeme Innes
11 August 2010 (LINK)

 

 

 

Statement to the UN by the Australian Government
11 August 2010 (DOC)

 

 

 

Media Release by ‘concerned Australians’
28 August 2010 (DOC)

 

 

 

ABC Alice Springs interview with Professor the Hon. Alastair Nicholson AO RFD QC discussing the Loss of Rights Report/UN CERD Concluding Observations
30 August (MP3)

 

 

 

     

Some Responses to the the Social Security and Other Amendment
(Welfare Reform and Reinstatement of the Racial Discrimination) Act
can be found in:

 

Professor the Hon. Alastair Nicholson AO RFD QC (PDF)

 

Graeme Innes, Australian Race Commissioner (LINK)

 

Graeme Mundine, Executive Secretary National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Ecumenical Commission (LINK)

 

World Council of Churches Living Letters (PDF)

 

Ngoppon Together Inc., Walking Together Reconciliation Group (PDF)

 

Social Policy Connections (SPC) Statement on NT Intervention & RDA (DOC)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Australian Aboriginal people give their views on the Northern Territory Intervention - February 2010

 

Download the book (3 MB)

 

“This Is What We Said” Order Form (DOC)

 

“This Is What We Said” Media Release (DOC)

 

Launched on 9 February 2010 at Melbourne University by


Irene Fisher, former CEO Sunrise Health Service, Katherine, NT and

 

The Hon.Alastair Nicholson AO RFD QC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Conversation with Elders held at the Melbourne University Law School on 19 May 2010.

 

Elders: Roslaie Kunoth-Monks OAM from Utopia in Central Australia
Rev Dr. Djiniyini Gondarra OAM from Galiwin'ku on Elcho Island in East Arnhem Land
Professor the Hon. Alastair Nicholson former Chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia

Facilitated by well-known journalist, Jeff McMullen

 

Conversation with Elders Transcript (DOC)

 

Click here for video with Elders night

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Will They Be Heard?” – a response to the NTER Consultations June to August 2009


Introduction by the Hon. Alastair Nicholson AO RFD QC


Prepared by Alastair Nicholson, Larissa Behrendt, Alison Vivian, Nicole Watson and Michele Harris - Research Unit Jumbunna Indigenous House of Learning, November 2009


Initiated and Co-ordinated by “concerned Australians”


Launched at Melbourne University Law School on 23 November by:


The Right Hon. Malcolm Fraser, AC CH,

 

The Hon. Alastair Nicholson AO RFD QC

 

Larissa Behrendt, Professor of Law & Director of Research at Jumbunna Houseof Indigenous Learning, University of Technology,Sydney,and

Theo Mackaay, General Secretary, Victorian Council of Churches  

 

 

“Will They Be Heard?” Media Release (DOC)

 

“Will They Be Heard?” Report (PDF)

 

 

 

 

 

 

PO Box 281

East Melbourne

Victoria, 8002

 

info@concernedaustralians.com.au

 

"If you have come to help me, you are wasting your time. But if you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together."

Lilla Watson and a group of Aboriginal activists in Queensland in the 1970s