VICTORIAN Treaty Advancement Commissioner Jill Gallagher will be in Echuca next week to run community forums.
The commissioner will inform people of the details of the next phase of a treaty process between Aboriginal people and the State of Victoria.
On June 21, history was made when Australia’s first treaty legislation became law with a bill passing through the Upper House of the Victorian Parliament, making Victoria the first state to enter formal treaty negotiations with its Aboriginal people.
Australia is still one of the only Commonwealth countries that does not have treaties with its first nation people.
A treaty provides an opportunity for Victoria to hit the reset button, to recast the relationship between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Victorians and to recognise and celebrate the status, rights, cultures and histories of Aboriginal Victorians.
But there is still considerable work to be done and conversations to be had, such as who negotiates and what is actually on the table.
These decisions will be made by the democratically-elected Aboriginal Representative Body and every Aboriginal person in Victoria can be involved in the process by voting in the election of this body in 2019.
The representative body will be set up by mid-2019 and traditional owners from the area will run as representative body candidates.
A community gathering for members of the Aboriginal community will be held on Tuesday from 10.30am to 12.30pm at Njernda Community Hub, 74 Annesley St, Echuca.
A general meeting for the wider community will be held from 3pm to 4 pm at St Mary’s Parish, 224 Anstruther St, Echuca.
For more information on the forums call 8684 7537 or you can also email [email protected]