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06 July 2022
NAIDOC Week is a national week-long chance to highlight, celebrate and recognise the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
In this region, we reside on the lands of the Wotjobaluk, Jaadwa, Jadawadjali, Wergaia and Jupagulk peoples and recognise that sovereignty was never ceded.
NAIDOC Week started just days after an appalling violent call for action against Indigenous people many would conceive -— especially in the modern day — unimaginable.
But the reality is, while Cook’s landing and the British settlement of Australia is well-known and well-documented; lesser known is the invasion of Aboriginal land and the injustices the community has — and continues — to endure.
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It shouldn’t take such events to prompt reflection — but they can also serve as a timely reminder to check-in.
The privilege of many is not afforded to all — and it lies within the systemic make-up of many of our everyday lives, rules, services, functions and accessibility. Those that we accept as the norm.
Barengi Gadjin Land Council chairman Dylan Clarke spoke to The Weekly Advertiser at length this week – and his articulate messages ultimately come back to awareness and education of basic human rights.
The right to be heard, to be seen, to be represented.
It’s what so many social justice calls to action aim to achieve.
A long-overdue Treaty could recognise and celebrate the unique status, rights, cultures and histories of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Concurrently, the Yoorrook Justice Commission has been established to ensure the Treaty is underpinned by truth-telling.
It’s up to all of us, as residents of Australia, to recognise and acknowledge the history of country through individual efforts for awareness and education.
To identify subconscious bias and call it out within ourselves and for others. To connect with the history and stories of a culture with connections to this land stemming thousands of years.
Mr Clarke acknowledged that non-Indigenous people won’t, and can’t, have the answers to reconciliation – but that awareness and education is the first step for a more united future.
A range of events across the region this week provide an opportunity to learn, embrace and immerse people within the culture of this region’s Traditional Owners.
To Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up! and call out racism, support reconciliation and work to secure meaningful and sustainable cultural and social change.
In the words of Mr Clarke, it’s time to stand together; to call out outdated beliefs and behaviours ‘so we can all walk together – and on the same path – to live in harmony. Together’.
The entire July 6, 2022 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!
The entire June 29, 2022 edition of AgLife is available online. READ IT HERE!