The next stage of a treaty with Aboriginal Victorians will be a two day state-wide meeting in late April where it is expected that the structure of a representative body to negotiate will be decided.
This follows an agreement on a road map to treaty at last year’s December 13 meeting.
Detailed options for representative structures are now being developed and the Victorian Aboriginal community will consider and decide on these during the next phase of consultation and at the state-wide meeting.
The meeting will be held at a location with rich Aboriginal cultural significance on April 28-29 at the conclusion of the next series of consultations with the Victorian Aboriginal community.
Building from previous community consultations, a further six face to face consultations will be held in March in several locations throughout Victoria taking in Echuca, Mildura, Portland, Sale, Wodonga and Melbourne.
The Aboriginal community will discuss voting options for the representative body including having a say on the process of electing representatives to the preferred representative body structure.
The Aboriginal Community Consultation on the Design of a Representative Body report commissioned by the Aboriginal Treaty Interim Working Group was also released today.
The report presents the findings from the community led consultations on representation held across Victoria from October to December 2016.
In entering this next phase of consultations, there has also been an extension of the Working Group’s term to enable them to continue this important work.
The report, updated Terms of Reference for the Aboriginal Treaty Interim Working Group, including a list of members, is available at http://aboriginalvictoria.vic.gov.au.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Natalie Hutchins
“It is important for Aboriginal Victorians to have a representative body that will enable them to negotiate a treaty with our government .”
“We have been clear we want a treaty just as much as Aboriginal Victorians and this is a great step forward.”