TRADITIONAL OWNERS DEMAND BIPARTISAN SUPPORT ON TREATY AND SEEK $63M FUNDING COMMITMENT FROM INCOMING STATE GOVERNMENT
Opposition Leader Matthew Guy once said past injustices to our Indigenous population remain a scar on our nation.
Yet the Liberal Party can’t make a credible commitment to mend that scar by committing to Treaty which would offer reparations for historical injustices.
The Federation of Victorian Traditional Owner Corporations is calling on the Liberal Party to support Treaty and for the incoming State Government to pledge $63.4 million towards a Treaty readiness package to ensure Traditional Owner groups lacking resources are prepared for Treaty.
Federation Chair Janine Coombs said Treaty is an unprecedented opportunity to embark on a renewed and mature relationship between Victoria’s First Peoples and the State but said it needs to be resourced properly.
“With the halt of South Australian Treaty negotiations by an incoming Liberal government at the front of our minds, we are calling on both major parties to support Treaty and pledge to this funding,” Ms Coombs said.
“We are seeking $63.4 million of funding over four years towards a suite of policies that will support Treaty readiness packages for Traditional Owners.
“This is to ensure we can improve recognition and enhance economic opportunities that will support health, employment and education outcomes for Traditional Owners and all Victorians.”
As a Traditional Owner led organisation, we are self-determination in practice, and we are enhancing the Treaty-readiness of our people by the advocacy of the collective needs of our members. This policy platform supports the self-determination of Victorian Traditional Owners and will ultimately enable Treaty.
Eastern Maar Aboriginal Corporation CEO Jamie Lowe said Traditional Owner groups must be given the opportunity and resources to say what Treaty means to them.
“Treaty is an opportunity for Victorian Traditional Owners to be able to determine our futures and to have a say in the laws and policies that affect our lives,” Mr Lowe said.
“In order to ensure the best processes and outcomes from these Treaty negotiations, Traditional Owner Corporations must be supported to ensure their mobs have the knowledge and capacity to engage meaningfully with the Treaty debate and its processes.”
The upcoming state election takes place this Saturday November 24.
Summary of policy areas:
1. Social and cultural mapping and strengthening
2. Country Planning
3. Organisational planning, governance and Traditional Owner group sustainability
4. Economic development
5. Renewable energy
6. Natural resource management
7. Reading country
8. Data sovereignty
9. Review of discriminatory legislation, regulation and policies
10. Independent Dispute Resolution Body
For further comment or information on the policies please contact Alexandra Sheehy on 0420 314 221.
Federation of Victorian Traditional Owner Corporations
PO Box 431, North Melbourne VIC 3051
t: (03) 9321 5300 | Toll Free: 1800 791 779 | f: (03) 9326 4075
We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the land we work on as the First People of this country.