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A Cultural Heritage Act that works for Traditional Owners!

This year saw one of the most historic moments in the fight that the Aboriginal Land Rights movement has been leading for over 50 years.

The final report into the Inquiry into the destruction of the Juukan Gorge caves calls for the same things this movement has been fighting for this past year.
Aboriginal Land Rights Protest - Photo by Elaine Pelot-Syron

Now, with a clear vision for what real cultural heritage protection legislation looks like, all that's left is for the Morrison Government to adopt the reports recommendations – in full.

Will you sign the petition to legislate protection of cultural heritage that works for Aboriginal people?

Photo taken by Elaine Pelot-Syron
In the aftermath of Rio Tinto's destruction Traditional Owners right across the country are exposing the scale of cultural heritage that is at risk - it's clear this is a national problem.

In NSW Traditional Owners are now locked in legal battle against Shenhua Energy, the world's largest thermal coal company, to stop them destroying ancient Aboriginal Artifacts with their open-cut mine.

BHP revealed plans to desecrate up to 40 (they have earmarked 80) 15,000 year old Aboriginal sites to expand its Pilbara mine.

This is a crisis impacting all states across the country, immediate action is needed to prevent further destruction.

This willful destruction has been facilitated through a weakened state and federal Aboriginal Heritage & Native title Acts. For decades governments have amended this legislation to serve mining corporations financial gain. At the same time ignoring First Nations people who are criticising the current legislation for:
  • Not giving traditional owners a right to appeal
  • Being carefully crafted in favour of development interests.
  • Requiring developers to ask permission to destroy sacred sites with approvals routinely granted usually without all of the information.

If agreement is not reached these corporations can then pursue compulsory acquisition.

Now Traditional Owners are concerned that developers will attempt to fast-track the section 18 approvals prior to the implementation of the new legislation.

Will you stand with Traditional Owners and make sure these attacks on Aborignal cultural heritage and sacred country never happens again?

Australia is home to the oldest continuing culture in the world and some of the most significant sites in the world. It is everyone's responsibility to stand up for Aboriginal culture and significant sites.

Stop the Destruction of Aboriginal Sacred Sites

This is how Rio Tinto got away with the desecration of Aboriginal Sacred Sites 👇

Posted by GetUp! on Thursday, 25 June 2020
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Here's what it needs to look like:
  • This new law must be co-designed with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • The law must be a Federal law not a state law to avoid confusion of who has the power
  • Investment in a review of all Aboriginal Heritage areas that would turn into a national register of sacred sites
  • Power for Traditional Owners custodial responsibility for cultural heritage to refuse to permit development impacting on cultural heritage.
  • Harsher penalties for companies who destroy cultural heritage


To the Morrison Government,

We demand you adopt, in full, the recommendations of the Senate Inquiry into the destruction of Juukan Gorge, and legislate cultural heritage protection!

15,152 signatures

We need 9,848 more

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