NSWALC urges NSW Government to take on Aboriginal language amendments

11 October 2017

The NSW Aboriginal Land Council (NSWALC) is urging the NSW Government to consider amendments to a Bill for Aboriginal Languages introduced to NSW Parliament this morning.

NSWALC Chair Roy Ah-See said the Bill was a historic opportunity to address the wrongs of past Government practices.

However, NSWALC has concerns that the legislation could seek to impose ministerial controls or intervention in relation to Aboriginal languages.

"Government can never own or control our languages and its role must be to work in partnership with Aboriginal interests.

"The NSW Aboriginal Land Council believes Aboriginal control of our languages is not negotiable."

The elected board of the NSWALC will convene this week to finalise amendments and forward them to the NSW Minister for Aboriginal Affairs.

Cr Ah-See said it was important that the NSW Parliament passed legislation on Aboriginal languages that respected the views of Aboriginal languages organisations and experts.

"While the NSW Aboriginal Land Council believes there is a need for legislation on Aboriginal languages, it's important that we get this right."

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Media contact: Andrew Williams 0429 585 291