Have Your Say on National First Nations Cultural Heritage reforms

22 March, 2022

22 March 2022

A co-authored discussion paper on the Modernisation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Heritage has been released by the First Nations Heritage Protection Alliance (FNHPA) and the Australian Government. NSWALC is a member of FNHPA, and is Co-Chaired by Councillor for the North Western Region, Anne Dennis.

The Commonwealth protections for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Heritage are largely contained in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Heritage Protection Act 1984 (ATSIHP Act).

The ATSIHP Act was introduced almost 40 years ago and has not been reformed to sufficiently protect and promote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural heritage. 

NSWALC and the Aboriginal Land rights network has long called for reforms to increase protections.

A two stage consultation process is being arranged to seek feedback on possible reforms.

The first stage aims to set parameters for reform options that will inform a broader detailed options paper. The consultations will update participants about past reviews and reports, and the current legislative arrangements for First Nations cultural heritage protection.

The second stage set for June to September 2022 will include a broad national engagement process informed by stage 1.

NSWALC encourages the Land Rights network to participate in these consultations. If you would like to book a stage 1 consultation for your community, please email tom.widdup@nntc.com.au.

NSWALC’s submission to the Parliamentary Inquiry into Juukan Gorge which outlines NSWALC’s key reform principles is available here.



Please contact the Strategy & Policy Unit on policy@alc.org.au or 02 9689 4444.


We pay our respects to the Traditional Owners of the lands where we work as well as across the lands we travel through. We also acknowledge our Elders past, present and emerging.

Artwork Credit: Craig Cromelin, from a painting he did titled, "4 favourite fishing holes". It is a snippet of his growing years on the Lachlan River, featuring yabby, turtle, fish and family.