This page includes information about NSW policies relating to when and how consultation should be undertaken with Aboriginal people, about Aboriginal heritage sites, places and objects.
As of 1 October 2010, new requirements have been introduced outlining the consultation that must be undertaken with the Aboriginal community, before a permit authorising damage or destruction to an Aboriginal object or place is issued by the Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH).
NSWALC has developed a Fact Sheet explaining the new Consultation Requirements, and how LALCs can have their say at each step of the process. Click here for a copy.
Click here for a Network Message for Local Aboriginal Land Councils about the new policy.
Copies of the new policy called the 'Aboriginal cultural heritage consultation requirements for proponents 2010' - the Consultation Requirements - are available from the Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) website at http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/licences/consultation.htm.
The Office of Environment and Heritage announced that it will apply to all applications lodged from the 12th April 2010.
NSWALC has also developed a Template Letter which LALCs can use to:
Provide persons seeking a permit (known as 'proponents') with information about who in the Aboriginal community they should contact about a development or project,
- Register an interest to participate in consultations, and/ or
- Offer paid cultural services to the proponent, such as a Sites
Feedback: NSWALC is currently seeking feedback about the Template Letter. If you have any suggestions or comments call the Policy and Research Unit of NSWALC on 02 9689 4444 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
IMPORTANT NOTE - The new Consultation Requirements require that the person who wants to apply for a permit - the proponent - to identify 'cultural knowledge holders' and invite those cultural knowledge holders to register and participate in consultations.
OEH has advised that the purpose of the new Consultation Requirements is not to allow a proponent to refuse to register an interested LALC to participate in consultations.
If any LALC who attempts to register is refused by a proponent, the LALC is urged to immediately contact DECCW and NSWALC on email@example.com.
Draft National Parks and Wildlife Regulations about consultation
In February 2010, the Minister for the Environment, the Hon Frank Sartor MP, has released draft National Parks and Wildlife Regulations. These draft regulations include sections on what consultation must be undertaken with Aboriginal people, before a permit authorising damage or destruction to an Aboriginal object or place is issued.
For a copy of the draft Regulations, and information about how you can have your say, see the main Culture and Heritage page on this website.
NSWALC submission - July 2009
The DECCW consultation policy has been under review for several years.
In 2009, DECCW released a draft of the consultation Requirements for community feedback. NSWALC provided a detailed submission which outlines how the current systems and how it can improved.
Click on the below links for a PDF version of the submission provided to DECCW by NSWALC
- Executive Summary of the Draft Community Consultation Requirements for Proponents - Part 6 of the National Parks and Wildlife Act.
- Full submission: Draft Community Consultation Requirements for Proponents - Part 6 of the National Parks and Wildlife Act.
Recommendations included in the submissions are designed to further the recognition of the rights of Aboriginal people to control their culture and heritage and to increase protection of Aboriginal culture heritage for future generations.