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Commitment by Newcastle City Council to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples of the City of Newcastle

Category: Event
Date: 14 April 1998
Sub Category:Statement of Commitment/Intention
Location:Newcastle, central coast, New South Wales, Australia
Subject Matter:Reconciliation | Local Government
URL: http://www.ncc.nsw.gov.au/council/plans/statements/indigenous.cfm
Summary Information:
The Commitment was entered into by the Newcastle City Council, Newcastle local government area based Land Council and other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander residents in the Newcastle area. The Statement aims to make a firm commitment to reconciliation by acknowledging past injustices and loss, valuing the Indigenous cultural contribution and developing an action plan to redress disadvantage and attain justice.
Detailed Information:
Newcastle City Council first signed a Statement of Commitment in 1993 which recognised prior Aboriginal occupancy of this land. The document was updated and enhanced in its practical orientation during Newcastle's Bicentennial year in 1997.

The Commitment which was signed on the 14th April 1998, reads:

'The Council of the City of Newcastle acknowledges that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, in this council area the Awabakal and Worimi, were the first peoples of this land, and are the proud survivors of more than two hundred years of continuing dispossession.

Newcastle Council recognises that the British invasion initiated massive changes to the land and its peoples.

As a vital step towards building a just, common future, Newcastle Council recognises the loss and the grief felt by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples for the alienation from their traditional land, the loss of their freedom, their lives and the forced removal of their children.

Newcastle Council supports the right of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to live according to their own values and cultures.

Newcastle Council recognises the vital importance of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people's contribution to strengthening and enriching our City and Region.

Newcastle Council, in consultation with local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples is committed to:

  • Respecting and conserving their cultural practices, traditional sites and significant places
  • Promoting activities which increase cultural sensitivity and awareness of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples
  • Developing an agreement between local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and other community members of the care of the local environment
  • Working towards the recovery of their languages, health, cultural practices and lost kinship.

    Newcastle City Council will look towards Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures for practical knowledge which could help to secure a sustainable future for our community.

    Newcastle Council, in negotiation with local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, will further reconciliate between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and other community members by working together for a treaty and/or other agreements of reconciliation.

    Newcastle City Council in negotiation with local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples will develop an action plan to redress disadvantages and attain justice for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples of this community.'

  • Related Entries

    Organisation
  • Newcastle City Council - Signatory
  • Newcastle Local Government area based Land Council - Signatory
  • Guraki Committee
  • Event
  • Draft Statement of Commitment to Indigenous Australians by Newcastle City Council
  • People
  • Aboriginal Community of Newcastle

  • References

    Book
    Australian Local Government Association in Cooperation with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission (1999) Working Out Agreements: A Practical Guide to Agreements between Local Government & Indigenous Australians
    Media Release
    Newcastle City Council (2004) 'Council Appoints New Guraki Committee Members'
    Resource
    Newcastle City Council (1998) A Commitment by Newcastle City Council to Indigenous Australians of the City of Newcastle

    Glossary

    Statement of Commitment/Intention (Australia)

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