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(AUSTRALIA) NSW Coronavirus Report: Each morning at 6am, Aboriginal health worker Zoe Duke starts work at the makeshift #COVID19 testing and vaccination hub on the outskirts of Moree in north-western New South Wales.

Australian First Nations People Need Your Help


#AceHealthReport – Nov.17: On busy days, she and her colleagues will work 12-hour shifts: I just love my community and I want to keep it safe,” she said: Until recently, the community had largely avoided the dreaded Delta strain as it snaked its way across the state: Then, around a month ago, COVID fragments were detected in the local sewage:

Urgent Help 🆘 we Need Help for our First Nations People 🆘

#AceDailyNews says according to ABC Health News Report: Says Why COVID-19 is infiltrating Indigenous communities: Two weeks on, there are more than 150 positive cases in Moree. Almost 97 per cent of cases are Aboriginal people, and a third are children, according to NSW Health.

Kindness & Love❤️ says get the jab and be protected God Bless Amen

A man gets a needle in his right arm.
Almost 97 per cent of people with COVID-19 in Moree are Aboriginal.(ABC News)

Once that first person got tested, and they tested positive — bang,” Ms Duke said: There was panic. Some didn’t believe it.”

A woman wearing a black top has a computer screen behind her.
Zoe Duke says there was panic in Moree when the first case of COVID-19 appeared.(ABC News)

Nursing manager Ros Rose from Pius X Aboriginal corporation said the outbreak had prompted some within the Aboriginal community to rethink their anti-vaccination stance.

“I’ve spoken to one of the patients that has had [COVID] and he said it’s the worst thing he’s ever had in his life. Unvaccinated. And he said if he had his time over again, he’d be vaccinated,” she said. 

But that sentiment is yet to be reflected in the data, with first dose rates rising by just 1.1 per cent among the organisation’s Aboriginal clients since COVID hit. Only around one in five are fully vaccinated.

An aerial view of a street in the town of Moree.
Around a month ago, COVID fragments were detected in the local sewage in Moree.(Supplied: Rabbit Hop Films)

“I remember the advertising for the AIDS programme — I mean, that put the fear of God into everybody and it worked,” Ms Rose said. 

“I think that’s a tactic we need to take because the younger population aren’t listening. 

“If the atmosphere doesn’t change … we’re going to have a death in Moree, and then all hell will break loose.”

‘A perfect storm’

A sign on a building says Moree District Health Service.
There are more than 150 cases of COVID in Moree.(ABC News)

The Moree outbreak is a microcosm of how COVID has disproportionately affected Indigenous communities across NSW. 

Indigenous people make up 8.3 per cent of COVID cases since June, despite representing just 3.4 per cent of the population, according to NSW Health.

Around half of Indigenous people infected in NSW were unvaccinated, while almost a third were children under 11 who were too young to get the jab. 

Kalinda Griffiths
Kalinda Griffiths says lower vaccination rates are just one reason Indigenous people are more at risk of COVID.(Supplied)

UNSW epidemiologist Kalinda Griffiths said there were multiple factors that put First Nations communities at higher risk during COVID outbreaks. 

“There’s a greater risk of transmission as well as having worse impact from COVID,” Dr Griffiths said. 

“This is due to the younger age distribution, higher rates of underlying conditions that can impact disease severity caused by COVID, as well as less access to services.

“Add on top of all that a lower rate of vaccination and what you have is a perfect storm.”

Queensland bracing for cases

A smiling woman wearing a black shirt
Kateena Poppy-Kyle says getting vaccinated for COVID-19 isn’t on the radar for some people in Queensland.(ABC News: Chris Gillette)

Aboriginal health groups in Queensland have been watching with trepidation as the virus has infiltrated regional NSW and forced parts of the Northern Territory into lockdown after nine Aboriginal people tested positive overnight

At the Moreton Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Health Service in Brisbane’s north, vaccine bookings have been steadily filling up. 

“A lot of our patients have mob down in NSW, so seeing their family down there and seeing the community outbreak, a lot of them are getting [the vaccine],” said practice manager Kateena Poppy-Kyle. 

“We’re seeing about 20 or so people day to day.”

The Birri Gubba and Wakka Wakka woman said the main drivers behind the slow vaccine uptake were misinformation on social media and complacency. 

“I think the main thing with Queensland at the moment is that COVID isn’t crazy like in NSW, so it’s not really the first thing on people’s radar at the moment,” she said.

A sign on a wall says 'I stepped up for the jab'
Indigenous people account for 8.3 per cent of COVID-19 cases in NSW since June, despite representing just 3.4 per cent of the state’s population.(ABC News)

Adrian Carson, chief executive of the Institute for Urban Indigenous Health, has another theory. 

“There wasn’t any data available to support communities to kind of inform their choice about vaccination,” he said. 

“Lots of percentages were getting thrown around, plenty of politicians talking, but none of it cut through a lot of the misinformation that was out there, particularly on social media, to actually make the threat real to our communities.

“We’ve got examples where … the mob were actually more scared of the vaccine than what they were of COVID.”

Modelling predicts hundreds of deaths if vaccination rate remains low

A man wearing a grey shirt.
Adrian Carson is the head of the Institute for Urban Indigenous Health. (ABC News: Chris Gillette)

Mr Carson’s organisation commissioned its own modelling from OzSage, an independent network of experts from across the country, and the results were grim. 

The modelling, based on data from late October, predicts that in the event of a COVID outbreak in south-east Queensland, up to 461 Indigenous people could die over three months without lockdown measures.

More than 3,000 Indigenous people could be hospitalised. 

The higher the vaccination rate, the lower those figures become.

“At the moment, based on the current hit rate, we’re talking about getting to 60 per cent [fully vaccinated] by the 17th of December, which is nowhere near the 80 per cent the broader community will have,” Mr Carson said.

Queensland Health Minister Yvette D'Ath speaking at a press conference
Queensland Health Minister Yvette D’Ath says the state government has been proactive in boosting Indigenous vaccination rates.(ABC News: Michael Lloyd)

Queensland Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said she had travelled to several First Nations communities in recent weeks to counteract vaccine hesitancy and misinformation. 

She said the state government was working in partnership with cultural groups to lift vaccination rates. 

“This approach is delivering results, with Queensland Health administering 10,385 doses to First Nations Queenslanders in the last week compared to 2,000 the week before,” Ms D’Ath said. 

Mr Carson hopes the OzSage modelling will hit home for Indigenous Queenslanders — a third of whom live in urban areas in the state’s south-east — and prevent catastrophe when the border opens. 

“It was our belief that if we can get the information in the hands of the mob, if we could sit down and talk them through it, then people would make the decision — the vast majority — to be vaccinated, and that’s definitely been the experience [so far],” he said. 

“We don’t want to see what happened in NSW, where it wasn’t until people started to pass away, that we saw this huge uplift in vaccination rates. We want to see that demand now.”

Play Video. Duration: 3 minutes 6 seconds
WA’s COVID-19 reopening roadmap

#AceHealthDesk report …………Published: Nov.17: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: and all wordpress and live posts and links here: thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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(AUSTRALIA) NT Australian Of The Year 2022 Report: The woman responsible for driving a major agreement aimed at reducing Indigenous incarceration rates and improving justice outcomes in the Northern Territory #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Nov.02: The agreement aims to reduce imprisonment rates, increase Aboriginal leadership and improve justice outcomes for Indigenous Territorians, in partnership with Aboriginal people.

#AceDailyNews says according to local news ‘ Indigenous Justice Advocate’ Leanne Liddle has been named NT Australian of the Year in moving ceremony: Born in Alice Springs, Arrernte woman Leanne Liddle, 52, was the first Indigenous woman to become a police officer in South Australia: After leaving the police force she attained a law degree, and went on to work for the United Nations and several high-profile government roles: During her decade of service she fought racism and discrimination, which further fuelled her drive to make a difference in the justice sector:

A serious-looking woman looking out into the distance against a desert backdrop.
Aboriginal justice unit director Leanne Liddle is the 2022 NT Australian of the Year.(ABC News: Michael Franchi)

She joined the Aboriginal Justice Unit in 2017 and, in that role, has been the driving force behind the Aboriginal Justice Agreement.

Ms Liddle said she wanted to use the platform provided by the awards to bring greater attention to people suffering under the current system.

“I want people to know that we don’t live in a fair and just system, where everything is equal,” she told the awards ceremony in Darwin. 

“I want people to know that, behind those statistics that we see with the imprisonment rates, with the domestic and family violence rates, with children and child protection, are people. And those people are the people that I’ve been charged to help with the Justice Agreement.”

NT Senior Australian of the Year: Robyne Burridge

Robyn Burridge is in a wheelchair on a jetty. She is smiling at the sea.
Disability services advocate and Focus-A-Bility founder Robyne Burridge is the 2022 NT Senior Australian of the Year. (ABC News: Ian Redfearn)

The NT Senior Australian of the Year award went to disability services advocate Robyne Burridge, aged 76.

Ms Burridge was recognised for her lifetime of work as a leader, advocate and activist in the disability sector. 

Ms Burridge is the founder of Focus-A-Bility, an organisation that provides advocacy, case management and information to individuals living with disability.

She is also a founding member of Integrated DisAbility Action and a member of the NT Primary Health Network governance committee.

“I have 76 years of lived experience… and all [living with a disability] is just another challenge,” she said.

“What I really want to see is more inclusiveness.

“There is much more inclusiveness now of people with disabilities, [but] we still have huge problems with access.”

NT Young Australian of the Year: Sizolwenkosi Fuyana

Sizol Fuyana sitting at her desk smiling at the camera
Businesswoman, podcaster and youth advocate Sizolwenkosi Fuyana is the 2022 NT Young Australian of the Year.(ABC: Liz Trevaskis)

Like Ms Liddle, youth justice is also a passion for NT Young Australian of the Year winner Sizolwenkosi Fuyana.

The 20-year-old small business owner, podcaster and youth advocate was recognised for her devotion to supporting disadvantaged young people at risk of entering the justice system.

Her work includes founding and working as the managing director of Fuyana Support, a consultancy firm that provides social and emotional wellbeing support to young people, developing a Youth Info Map in partnership with the City of Palmerston, and chairing the Northern Territory Youth Round Table. 

She also works with youth at the Don Dale Youth Detention Centre and presents a podcast about personal growth and facing adversity.

“I look back to the Sizol of two years ago — I was sitting in a psych ward, and I remember a nurse, she said to me, ‘Sizol, one day, you’re going to change the world.’ And I looked at her and I said, ‘I’m in psych ward, how is that possible?’

“I’m not here to represent myself, I’m here to represent the young people in Don Dale that I work with, cause they’re the ones that will be here after me.”

NT Local Hero: Rebecca Forrest

Daughter with guitar with mum at a suburban lake setting. Smiling.
Event organiser and fundraiser Rebecca Forrest, pictured with her daughter Tahlia, is the 2022 NT Local Hero.(ABC Radio Darwin: Conor Byrne)

Rebecca Forrest was honoured with the NT Local Hero award for her more than 13 years of work raising awareness and funds for a wide range of causes. 

Her efforts have contributed to raising about $1 million in funds towards violence prevention and supporting people with autism, Life Education, the Cancer Council and Police Legacy. 

She is also the founder of No One Left Behind, which runs events focused on inspiring others.

All four Northern Territory winners are now eligible for the national Australian of the Year awards, which will be announced at a ceremony on January 25 next year.

#AceNewsDesk report …………..Published: Nov.02: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: and all wordpress and live posts and links here: thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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(CANADA) Canadian Human Rights Tribunal Report: Trudeau appeals against a court order to pay billions of dollars to compensate indigenous children who went through the child welfare system #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – Nov.01: The case has been a source of tension between tribes and the government: The government has said it is not opposed to compensation, but that it had issues over the order’s jurisdiction and how the money was to be divided. Canada’s “Sixties Scoop” saw indigenous children taken from their families. Now survivors are mapping out their stories

#AceDailyNews says according to BBC Canada News Report: Trudeau Challenges compensation order for indigenous children: Last month, a top court upheld a 2016 ruling that the government underfunded First Nations services compared with those for non-indigenous children: It ordered C$40,000 ($31,350; £23,340) payouts to each child who was in the on-reserve welfare system after 2006.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau
Mr Trudeau has pledged to compensate victims

Ministers and officials said in a statement on Friday that they had filed a “protective appeal” as a deadline loomed, but would pause litigation until all parties meet before December. The statement added that they will seek to settle the matter outside of court.

“I despise the imagery, but we’re putting our swords down,” Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations Marc Miller told reporters in a Friday evening news conference. 

Campaigners had called for the government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau not to appeal against the ruling.

Cindy Blackstock from the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society told CBC News: “If there is no deal, we’re going to go to hearings on an expedited basis. We don’t want children to lose out on this time.”

In 2016, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal ruled that the government had underfunded First Nations children’s services compared with those for non-indigenous children.

The government appealed against that ruling in 2019, but lost its challenge last month in the federal court. 

Mr Trudeau, who won re-election last month, came into office in 2015 promising to strengthen and restore ties with native communities.

Speaking from the Netherlands ahead of international summits in Rome and Glasgow, he told reporters: “We are committed to compensating indigenous people who were harmed as children in child and family services.”

#AceNewsDesk report …………..Published: Nov.01: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: and all wordpress and live posts and links here: thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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(NEW SOUTH WALES) NAIDOC REPORT: As the week celebrations continue with the theme “Heal Country”, the government is being urged to improve laws that protect Aboriginal sacred sites and cultural heritage #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – July.17: The NAIDOC Committee selected the Heal Country theme as a call to the nation to continue to seek greater protections for lands, waters, sacred sites and cultural heritage from exploitation, desecration, and destruction.

#AceDailyNews reports that NSW to pay more than lip service to NAIDOC’s ‘Heal Country’ theme, says Aboriginal Land Council according to chairwoman Anne Dennis said the theme gives the community a focus to re-examine the current laws

Saturday 10 Jul 2021 at 3:58am

“It’s not only a place in time for Aboriginal people but it is a political point in time as well,” she said.

“Heal Country is so important to everyone. There is no time like now that we actually reflect on it.

“Really, the planning laws at the moment protect development and destruction of Aboriginal sites and country and really don’t allow Aboriginal people to have decision-making rights.”

Under the existing regime, the government allows proponents of significant infrastructure, like mines or major housing developments, to set aside heritage protection laws.

Inside a sandstone cave, the roof held up with timber posts and, the back of the cave has recently fallen, a lot of cracking.
There are concerns for rock art in “Whale Cave” in the Illawarra escarpment, where mining subsidence is causing damage.(ABC Illawarra: Tim Fernandez)

In a submission to the federal government’s Juukan Gorge inquiry, the Land Council provided evidence of the “outdated” and “inadequate” laws governing cultural protection in NSW while they are contained within the National Parks and Wildlife Act.

It found:

  • Despite the hundreds of thousands of Aboriginal sites across NSW, only about 100 are formally protected under the current National Parks and Wildlife Act. 
  • Approaches under the Act prioritise physical evidence of previous occupation and do not view country holistically, recognising cultural values.
  • For the first half of 2020, about four Aboriginal Heritage Impact Permits (AHIPs) to destroy Indigenous heritage were issued every week by the state government.

Ms Dennis said the government had to introduce standalone legislation to protect heritage.

“The new laws must be based on self-determination and free, prior and informed consent,” she said.

“We’ve been working with the NSW government around standalone legislation for over three decades now and that hasn’t come.

“And us as Aboriginal people having that voice to say, ‘No’, or, ‘How can we do it better?’, that would be a better way to protect what little we have left.

“The cries of Aboriginal people go unheard.

“The amount of development and applications that are granted are quite constant.

“There can be thousands of applications. A lot of the sites are not recorded or identified because of destruction.”

Reform stalled

There has been bipartisan commitment to reform since 2010, but it has not delivered.

The NSW Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Don Harwin is working on standalone legislation expected to be introduced to Parliament by the end of the year.

But he’s under intense pressure from industry and his party’s Right not to unwind privileges provided by State Significant Infrastructure.

The Minister was contacted for comment but did not provide a response.

A spokesperson for the Department of Aboriginal Affairs said the government was committed to improving the process of Aboriginal cultural heritage management.
“The NSW Government has committed to removing Aboriginal cultural heritage regulation from the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974 and is undertaking a co-design process as part of the Aboriginal cultural heritage reform,” the spokesperson said.

“As part of this process, the NSW Government is working with peak Aboriginal stakeholders, the NSW Aboriginal Land Council, NTSCORP, and the Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Advisory Committee to progress legislative reform.”

Delays cause daily destruction

Shadow minister for Aboriginal Affairs, David Harris, said every day the government delayed a new law, sites were being destroyed.

“It’s quite tragic,” he said.

“Under the current process the Aboriginal community is pretty much left out of the process.

“They are not properly consulted, but even more than that we have to get past consulting Aboriginal people and we have to have them involved in the decision making.”

#AceNewsDesk report ……Published: July.17: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: and all wordpress and live posts and links here: thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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(CANADA) Indigenous Tribe Report: Group said on Wednesday a search using ground-penetrating radar has found 182 human remains in unmarked graves at a site near a former Catholic Church-run residential school that housed Indigenous children taken from their families #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – July.03: The Lower Kootenay Band said in a news release that it began using the technology last year to search the site close to the former St Eugene’s Mission School, which was operated by the Catholic Church from 1912 until the early 1970s.

#AceDailyNews reports that a ‘Canadian Indigenous Group’ says human remains found at former Catholic Church-run residential school and the latest discovery of graves near Cranbrook, British Columbia follows reports of similar findings at two other such church-run schools, one of more than 600 unmarked graves and another of 215 bodies according to our recent reports as attacks on churches have been condemned and statues of Queen Victoria & Queen Elizabeth 11 have been pulled down and destroyed and has prompted calls for national celebrations to be called off.

A third unmarked Indigenous gravesite found in Canada
The latest find is the third over the last few weeks at Canada’s church-run residential schools.(Reuters: Jennifer Gauthier)

Key points:

  • Two other similar discoveries were made at former church-run residential schools in Canada earlier this year
  • The Canadian government has acknowledged that physical and sexual abuse was rampant in these schools
  • Indigenous groups have sought an apology from the Pope, but he has refused

It said the search found the remains in unmarked graves, some about a metre deep.

It’s believed the remains are those of people from the bands of the Ktunaxa nation, which includes the Lower Kootenay Band, and neighbouring First Nation communities.

Chief Jason Louie of the Lower Kootenay Band called the discovery “deeply personal” since he had relatives attend the school.

“Let’s call this for what it is,” Chief Louie told CBC radio in an interview. “It’s a mass murder of Indigenous people.”

“The Nazis were held accountable for their war crimes. I see no difference in locating the priests and nuns and the brothers who are responsible for this mass murder to be held accountable for their part in this attempt of genocide of an Indigenous people,” he said.

Unmarked graves of Indigenous children at Marieval, Canada
The grounds of the former Marieval Indian Residential School, with what are believed to be 751 unmarked graves. (AP: Mark Taylor/The Canadian Press)

From the 19th century until the 1970s, more than 150,000 Indigenous children were forced to attend state-funded Christian boarding schools in an effort to assimilate them into Canadian society.

Thousands of children died there of disease and other causes, with many never returned to their families.

Nearly three-quarters of the 130 residential schools were run by Roman Catholic missionary congregations, with others operated by the Presbyterian, Anglican and the United Church of Canada, which today is the largest Protestant denomination in the country.

The Canadian government has acknowledged that physical and sexual abuse was rampant in the schools, with students beaten for speaking their native languages.

On Tuesday, it was announced that a group of Indigenous leaders will visit the Vatican later this year to press for a papal apology for the Roman Catholic Church’s role in residential schools.

A tepee and Indigenous groups are seen holding a vigil at the site of the unmarked graves
A vigil near the unmarked graves of the former Marieval Indian Residential School.(AP: Mark Taylor/The Canadian Press)

After the graves were found in Kamloops, the Pope expressed his pain over the discovery and pressed religious and political authorities to shed light on “this sad affair.”

But he didn’t offer the apology sought by First Nations and the Canadian government.

A papal apology was one of 94 recommendations from Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, but the Canadian bishops’ conference said in 2018 that the Pope could not personally apologise for the residential schools.

Attacks on churches condemned

Since the discovery of unmarked graves at the sites of former residential schools, there have been several fires at churches across Canada.

There has also been some vandalism targeting churches and statues in cities.

On Wednesday, Alberta’s Premier condemned what he called “arson attacks at Christian churches” after a historic parish was destroyed in a fire.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and an Indigenous leader said arson and vandalism targeting churches was not the way to get justice following the discovery of the unmarked graves.

“The destruction of places of worship is unacceptable and it must stop,” Mr Trudeau said. “We must work together to right past wrongs.″

Assembly of First Nations chief Perry Bellegarde said burning churches was not the way to proceed.

“I can understand the frustration, the anger, the hurt and the pain, there’s no question,″ he said. “But to burn things down is not our way.″

Statues of Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth II torn down in Canada

4 hours agoWatch: Statue of Queen Victoria toppled in Winnipeg, Canada

A prominent statue of Queen Victoria has been torn down by protesters in Canada as anger grows over the deaths of indigenous children at residential schools.

The protesters cheered as the statue at the legislature in Manitoba’s capital Winnipeg was toppled on Thursday.

A smaller statue of Queen Elizabeth II was also upended nearby.

Local media say police used a stun gun to arrest a man at the scene but the protest was largely peaceful.

The toppling of the statues came on Canada Day, an annual celebration on 1 July that marks the country’s founding by British colonies in 1867.


#AceNewsDesk report ………Published: July.03: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: and all wordpress and live posts and links here: thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

Ace Daily News Australian History World History & Research Reports

(AUSTRALIA) When colonists arrived to set up the city of Melbourne, Bunurong people who had lived on the land for tens of thousands of years had their world upended and its now after 185yrs its being put right #AceHistoryDesk report

#AceHistoryReport – June.27: It’d be the equivalent today of a giant spaceship pulling up over the city,” Bunurong man Dan Turnbull said: And I know, that’s outrageous. But it was outrageous, what happened at the time.”

AUSTRLIA: Melbourne’s birth destroyed Bunurong and Wurundjeri boundaries. 185 years on, they’ve been redrawn after the formal founding of Melbourne, the Wurundjeri and Bunurong people have reasserted their status as traditional owners over the heart of what is now a sprawling city home to more than five million people

Across the state, including in Far East Gippsland and the north-east, there are pockets of land where traditional owners are still working towards formal recognition.Wurundjeri cultural burning revived at Coranderrk….When Wurundjeri people were last freely conducting cultural burns in the 1850s, historical records show Gold Rush settlers interpreted it as a threat. This week, the ancient land management tool has been further restored.

NOTE: This story contains images and names of people who have died.

A black and white painting shows men unloading crates from a ship on the banks of the Birrarung (Yarra River).
The settlement of Melbourne began in 1835, within months of John Pascoe Fawkner’s ship The Enterprise arriving on August 29.(Supplied: State Library of Victoria)

Over just a few decades, Bunurong and Wurundjeri people were pushed off their land to make way for Melbourne: Languages, cultural practices and access to important sites were banned: In some instances, there were contemporary accounts that Aboriginal women effectively terminated pregnancies, such was their despair at the world their children would grow up in.

A detailed drawing shows a group of Aboriginal people overlooking the beginnings of the city of Melbourne being built.
A drawing by surveyor, architect and artist Robert Russell from 1840 illustrates how the Melbourne settlement swiftly displaced Aboriginal people.(State Library of Victoria: Robert Russell)

“You probably struggled to find anything that could have had a greater impact, apart from maybe a natural disaster at a huge level,” Mr Turnbull said.

Princes Bridge near Flinders St Station in Melbourne's CBD with hardly any traffic on it.
In the space of 185 years, the Birrarung has become badly polluted, as the city of Melbourne has been built around it.(ABC News: Ron Ekkel)

After four years of close discussions, the two groups were not able to reach agreement on where a boundary line should be drawn across the city’s centre.

So the Victorian Aboriginal Heritage Council stepped in with a proposed border to mark Wurundjeri country to the north and Bunurong country to the south — and this week, both groups agreed on that proposal.

The new line means both traditional owner groups, who already held responsibility over large tracts of land, will have their recognised land expanded.

It’s the process of years of work piecing back together knowledge that, before colonisation, had been shared between generations of Bunurong and Wurundjeri people for tens of thousands of years.

The new boundary line runs from west to east across the city, placing the CBD, Richmond and Hawthorn in Wurundjeri territory, and Albert Park, St Kilda and Caulfield on Bunurong land.

A map of metropolitan Melbourne is split into a yellow northern half (Wurundjeri) and pink southern half (Bunurong).
The boundary (purple line) will take effect from July 1, with Wurundjeri country (yellow) to the north, and Bunurong (pink) to the south.(Supplied: Victorian Aboriginal Heritage Council)

Mount Cottrell, which is the site of a 1836 massacre in which at least 10 Aboriginal people were killed, will be jointly managed by the two groups above the 160-metre point.

The decision clarifies who councils, businesses and communities in the most densely populated parts of the city should recognise as traditional owners from July 1.

Mr Turnbull, who is the CEO of the Bunurong Land Council Aboriginal Corporation, said his people were “deeply excited” by the outcome, which required concessions from both traditional owner groups.

“I’m only speaking for our group, but I think both groups would agree that in order to reach this outcome, that we’ve all had to be quite flexible,” he said.

Dan Turnbull stands in front of bushland, dressed in a black Bunurong Land Council shirt.
Bunurong man Dan Turnbull says the boundary agreement is the product of long-running and respectful discussion.(ABC News: Joseph Dunstan)

But Mr Turnbull said his community was at peace with that and believed the result was “a better future state for everyone”.

The Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung Cultural Heritage Aboriginal Corporation, which has also agreed to the boundaries, declined to comment.

Reviving ancient boundaries is a complex exercise

Trying to resolve the question of where the boundary should be drawn was a task fraught with complexity.

For one thing, the borders as they were practiced before colonisation were not legalistic, explicit lines, but commonly understood landscapes and markers including plains and rivers.

Many of those have been concreted over and waterways diverted to build Melbourne, meaning the Victorian Aboriginal Heritage Council, which developed the agreed-upon proposal, had to consider other markers.

That includes man-made elements such as roads, with Bank Street to become part of the boundary running through South Melbourne.

In outlining the boundary, the council acknowledged how the forces of colonisation had warped and bent the boundaries.

A black and white photograph shows a crowd of people watching on Prince Alfred lay the foundation stone at Melbourne Town Hall.
Barely 30 years after colonisation had begun, Prince Alfred was laying the foundation stone at the Melbourne Town Hall in 1867.(State Library of Victoria: Charles Hewitt)

“Today, as modern people living an ancient Culture, we are comfortable enough in ourselves to draw a line on a map,” the council said.

“We are strong enough in the old ways to know, in our hearts, that the line it is as accurate as we can make it today.

“To identify a road or a new waterway as a boundary is our answer to a problem not of our creation.”

The written records of colonisers also played a key role in understanding where the boundaries lay before colonisation.

In particular, the diaries and recollections that quoted two prominent Aboriginal leaders during the early years of colonisation — Bunurong elder Derrimut, and Wurundjeri elder William Barak.

A painting of Derrimut, who is wearing a ring on each hand and a possum-skin cloak.
Derrimut was a key Bunurong elder during the early years of colonisation.(State Library of NSW: Benjamin Duterrau)

The council found Wurundjeri land was largely defined by the Birrarung (Yarra River), including country surrounding waterways which flowed into the freshwater Birrarung.

Council took the “crucial indicator” for Bunurong land to be if the water on it flowed into saltwaters.

Council chair Rodney Carter, a Dja Dja Wurrung and Yorta Yorta man, said every decision to recognise traditional owners was really significant.

“But I think what’s really present in all our minds, is such a populous place, our capital city in the state of Victoria … it’s fantastic that we can now hand that over to the traditional owners to sort of lead what should happen to the protection of cultural heritage,” he said.

Mr Carter said it was important to acknowledge the line required in today’s Australia to manage land affairs did not reflect the historical boundaries, which were “more blurred because they’re the places that bring us together, make us stronger”.

“The boundaries are the places that define us, in our strength towards each other and our relationship,” he said.

An open plain rises into a gentle hill, with some houses build along the slope.
Cultural responsibility to care for Mount Cottrell, a traumatic site of massacres, will be shared between Wurundjeri and Bunurong.(Wikimedia: Mattinbgn)

“And that’s not always clearly understood and even applied today, because we need these boundaries, really as borders.

“And they weren’t that in a past sense.

“So going forward, I think another brilliant thing is how groups actually collaborate at these points of strength, these boundaries, where they come together.

“And I feel really positive about that, because it’s an important value for us to instill in future generations on their governance.”

Caring for country responsibilities will grow

For the Bunurong Land Council Aboriginal Corporation, the new boundary means its responsibilities will increase after July 1, when they will take on formal responsibility for protecting cultural heritage over the vast tract of land.

“There are now 22 local government authorities that will be seeking to engage with Bunurong people for decision making within their boundaries,” he said.

The corporation is often contacted by schools, too, who are keen to ensure they are sharing culturally appropriate lessons with their students on Bunurong land.

Dan Turnbull works on a computer inside an office with maps of traditional owner boundaries on the wall behind him.
Mr Turnbull says the corporation is looking to expand so it can meet its obligations across the new area.(ABC News: Joseph Dunstan)

From July, the group will also need to be across more significant construction sites, where they have a duty to ensure that harm to any Aboriginal heritage discovered while digging is minimised.

“What we’re finding now in the city, which is the first built place in, in what is now known to be Melbourne, is often when they’re knocking down a building and they’re doing excavation into the new car parks that they’re proposing to put under the ground, they’re finding new heritage, that is still very much intact,” Mr Turnbull said.

“There will be probably 50 per cent of the city, that when you go down under that subsurface, you still find the historical stuff on top, marbles, buttons, even the rooms of the buildings, doorways, fireplaces, their rubbish pits are still there.

“And then you dig underneath that, and then all our stuff’s still there.”

Some traditional owners yet to be formally recognised

While the complete boundaries over Victoria’s capital city are now settled, the struggle for other traditional owners continues.

There are just 11 formally recognised traditional owner groups, who cover around 75 per cent of the state’s land.

As the state’s treaty process marches on, Victoria is coming closer to a point in time where individual nations may seek to negotiate agreements with the state government.

The First Peoples’ Assembly, which is laying the groundwork for treaties, is concerned about a lack of progress on the recognition of those groups, despite multi-million-dollar investments from the Andrews government in recent years.

At a meeting this month, the Assembly called on the government to urgently fast track those applications, so those groups could gain Registered Aboriginal Party (RAP) status, which confers legal rights to speak for country.

The Victorian government has said it is reviewing its program aimed at supporting Aboriginal nation-building and recognition, to see how it could more closely support traditional owners.

Back on Bunurong land in Frankston, Mr Turnbull hopes news of the boundary will awaken more curiosity in Melburnians to seek out the full story of their city’s history, directly from the books of settlers like John Fawkner.

 “Because it’s a beautiful story, and it’s also a very sad story, as well,” he said.

“With more rollercoasters than any Hollywood blockbuster that’s out at the moment — the stories of warriors and leaders and things that have been lost, things that have been found.

“We’re still here and we’ll always be here.”

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(TASMANIA) JUST IN: Ten Aboriginal heritage officers have lodged a joint submission with Hobart City Council against the proposed cable car on kunanyi/Mount Wellington, saying it would “significantly affect the Aboriginal cultural values of kunanyi forever” #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – June.22: In its submission, the group criticised the Aboriginal heritage assessment used by the Mount Wellington Cableway Company in its application to the council as “perpetuating the racist myth of terra nullius”.

TASMANIA: The report, conducted by South Australian group Frontier Heritage Consulting, concluded the development “does not involve an Aboriginal heritage site” and “impacts on Aboriginal heritage sites have been reasonably avoided”.

They’ve brought in an archaeologist not even from Tasmania, but from another state, and this individual hasn’t even bothered to step outside of his own process and talk to Aboriginal people in Tasmania about what our values are,” Ms Read told ABC Radio Hobart.

Artist impression of a cable car development proposal.
An artist’s impression of the proposed cable car development on kunanyi/Mt Wellington.(Mt Wellington Cableway Company)

Sharnie Read, an Aboriginal heritage officer with the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre and a signatory of the joint submission, said the author of the report did not engage with any Tasmanian Aboriginal people.

“Yet he’s put forward a report that supposedly gives an understanding of what the Aboriginal values and significance of kunanyi is.”

Artist's impression of a cable car development on a mountain.
The proposal would also see a restaurant, cafe and bar at the Pinnacle of kunanyi/Mt Wellington.(Mt Wellington Cableway Company)

Aboriginal Heritage Officer Aaron Everett said none of the Aboriginal people he had spoken with supported the cable car proposal, and they were frustrated by the “shallow” heritage assessment.

“It’s not looking at it from an Aboriginal perspective, and how we look at our own country, and how we determine how we look at areas such as kunanyi,” Mr Everett said.

“It doesn’t always need to be a physical site in the sense of ‘stones and bones’. We have more of a connection to our country than just those physical sides of things.”

Artist impression of Mount Wellington summit cable car station
Public submissions to the council about the proposal will close at midnight on Tuesday.(

The Mount Wellington Cableway Company said it tried to engage local Aboriginal heritage officers to conduct its assessment, but they all refused.

The company said it then looked to Aboriginal Heritage Tasmania’s website to find an alternative, which recommended Frontier Heritage Consulting.

Ms Read said the local Aboriginal heritage officers refused to do the assessment because they had already made it clear they would not support any development on the mountain.

“There was no point being paid when you’re going to give them the same response you can right now,” she said.

“We felt that our position was stronger when we represented our community first and foremost, as opposed to a developer via being paid under a contract.”

Cable car near summit.
The proposed cable car route would pass over a section of kunanyi/Mt Wellington known as the “Organ Pipes”.(Supplied: MWCC)

As of 11:00am on Monday, the Hobart City Council had received 7,340 submissions on the cable car proposal — a record for the most submissions received by a council in Tasmania.

The previous record was set in 2019, when 1,456 submissions were received in response to Fragrance Group’s proposal to build a high-rise hotel in Hobart’s CBD.

Submissions close at midnight on Tuesday, and will then be handed over to an external assessment panel to prepare a report for the council.

The issue is then expected to be voted on by the council’s Planning Committee on July 27. 

Regardless of the committee’s decision next month, Ms Read said she expected the issue would end up with the Resource Management and Planning Appeal Tribunal (RMPAT), and it could go all the way to Tasmania’s Supreme Court.

“If that’s the case, we’ll fight it all the way,” she said.

Anti-cable car protesters dressed in red spell out No Cable Car in the foothills of kunanyi/Mount Wellington
The proposal for the cable car on kunanyi/Mount Wellington has divided the community for years.(Supplied: Rob Blakers)

#AceNewsDesk report ……..Published: Jun.22: 2021:

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(WESTERN AUSTRALIA) Purnululu National Park Report: Premier tourist destinations, the World Heritage-listed its remains at the centre of a three-decade dispute between its recognised traditional owners #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – June.21: The Bungle Bungle Range in the park has been a sacred place for Indigenous people in the East Kimberley for tens of thousands of years:

WA: Dispute rumbles on and dispute between indigenous peoples ‘sacred place’ for tens of thousands of years has put a ‘handbrake’ on UNESCO-listed Purnululu park’s potential as a tourist attraction

Kindness & LoveX❤️ says its time for what belongs to God to be given back to God so the ‘ Meek Will Inherit The Earth’ Amen

helicopter flies above beehive-like  rock formations
Two First Nations are fighting for native title over Purnululu National Park, home of the spectacular Bungle Bungle Range. (Supplied: Helispirit)

But while visitors flock each dry season to marvel at striking beehive rock formations, the park’s future is under a cloud.

In October, the Federal Court tried to sort out the dispute and found two opposing Indigenous groups both have native title rights to Purnululu, which is a step on the way to a native title determination.

Because the decision did not clearly favour one of the claimants, both groups have been left feeling “white man’s laws” are not equipped to deal with “blackfella” disputes.

Who claims ownership to Purnululu?

The national park is wedged between two Indigenous nations, Gija (or Kija) to the north and Jaru to the south.

But after centuries of social upheaval there’s no agreement on a boundary.

Bonnie Edwards is part of the Gajangana Jaru claim, or as she says, “northern-speaking Jaru”.

For three decades she has argued Purnululu is in Gajangana Jaru country.

“We’re the sovereign owners of that national park,” she said.

“Our people are royalty from that area and these people are claiming ownership because some white people want to be on good terms with this mob.”

Purnululu national park
Stakeholders say the standoff is stopping Purnululu becoming the next Kakadu or Uluru-Kata Tjuta.(Matt Brann)

Traditional owner Ben Cross is part of the opposing Purnululu claim, a group the Federal Court heard primarily identify as Gija.

He said his claim was made up of the rightful traditional owners, irrespective of them being Gija or Jaru.

“We call ourselves Gija, and that’s through my mum’s lineage. However we also speak Jaru,” he said.

“So it’s a Gija-Jaru dialect in that part of the world, because it’s right on the boundary of two language groups.”

He disagrees with Ms Edwards’s view that the Gija tribal boundary does not include Purnululu.

“Over time, with fluctuating climates, people would move back and forward, so it’s not a hard boundary,” he said.

Bonnie Edwards wears a red, yellow and black headband and smiles slightly, standing in front of a palm tree.
Bonnie Edwards says Purnululu is Gajangana Jaru land.(ABC News)

Who is right under Australian law?

In her Federal Court decision summary, Justice Debra Mortimer said several different Aboriginal groups all had country in Purnululu.

“It was not country only for the ancestors of the Jaru people, or only for the ancestors of the Gija people. It was more mixed,” she said.

Ms Edwards said the decision was wrong and some were running out of patience and prepared to “declare war against the other tribe”. 

“We told the Federal Court if you can’t sort it out we’ll have to sort it out Aboriginal way,” she said.

“It will be all blackfellas and we’ll fight it out and see who wins, because that’s what they did a long time ago.”

A handful of people were named in both claims, a situation that angers Ms Edwards, but Mr Cross said it reflected the complex family trees involved.

He wants both sides to put aside their differences.

“These people (Gajangana Jaru claimants) weren’t shut out in the first place. They were part of the original group,” he said.

“All the old people have told me the door is always open for them to come back in, but for whatever reason personalities have got in the way.”

A pathway leads into the Purnululu National Park
The dispute among traditional owners has prevented joint management of Purnululu National Park, unlike other Australian UNESCO locations. (Supplied: Unsplash Ben Carless)

What does it mean for park management?

Unlike two other high-profile UNESCO World Heritage drawcards, Kakadu and Uluru-Kata Tjuta, the dispute has prevented Purnululu from being jointly managed with traditional owners.

Rangers from both cultural groups are employed for day-to-day operations.

A Department of Biodiversity Conservation and Attractions spokesman said in a statement to the ABC that it hoped to set up joint management once native title holders had established a prescribed body corporate.

“DBCA looks forward to an agreement between the groups and the opportunity to work with them in presenting the cultural heritage and natural values of the park to visitors from around the world,” the spokesman said.

But Ms Edwards said she would not participate in joint management with the Gija claimants.

“It’s not going to work. It’s just going to fall apart,” she said.

“We don’t want to have joint management with people like that.”

Purnululu National Park in the Kimberley
The park’s “beehive” cones are an international drawcard.(ABC News: Eliza Borrello)

‘Handbrake’ on Purnululu’s potential

Members on both sides of the argument and the government agree the conflict has stopped Purnululu from reaching its full potential.

“More cultural interpretation in the park is welcomed,”  the DBCA spokesman said.

“At a practical level, immersive cultural interpretation and tourism experiences have been constrained by contesting claims between Jaru and Gija people.”

Mr Cross said the dreams he had for his country had not been realised.

“It’s (the dispute) pretty much put the handbrake on it (the park) … it’s cultural value and just the level of value that it has,” he said.

Ms Edwards has a vision of her own, a wilderness lodge that provides cultural tours and products.

But she has been unable to find government backing while the dispute is unresolved.

“We were going to get young people — instead of them being on drugs and alcohol — all out there,” she said.

“So that they can show off their country to visitors to the park.”

‘Should be a truth-telling process’

The region’s peak native title body, the Kimberley Land Council, says the situation highlights weaknesses in native title laws.

Wayne Bergmann
Wayne Bergmann.(ABC: Ben Collins)

Acting CEO Wayne Bergmann says the adversarial nature of the court process could pit Aboriginal families against one another.

“The judge has heard both sides of their stories and made a decision and that decision (was) neither the applicants nor the respondents will control (the park),” he said.

“It’s not a framework that creates a future of harmony.”

He said it was clear more resourcing was needed to address cases as complex as this and there was a strong argument to shift the model to an inquisitorial system, as used in the Northern Territory.

“There should be a truth-telling process and that is an inquisitorial model, where a commissioner is there to leave no stone unturned to find out the truth and settle those issues,” Mr Bergmann said.

#AceNewsDesk report ………Published: Jun.21: 2021:

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(AUSTRALIA) Opinion Aboriginal History Report: There are two sides too every story in everything we read and debunking one persons or peoples does not allow ‘Free Speech’ to flourish and opinions to be heard allowing the ‘truth’ to set us all free #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – June.15: An influential Australian bestseller that painted a radically different view of Aboriginal history prior to colonisation has been “debunked” in a “damning” new book by two respected academics.

Author Bruce Pascoe’s best-selling Aboriginal history book Dark Emu ‘debunked’ Author and journalist Stuart Rintoul, writing in The Sydney Morning Herald’s Good Weekend magazine on Saturday, described their rebuttal to Dark Emu as “damning”.

Bruce Pascoe's claims about Indigenous society and history rejected by historian

Dark Emu, author Bruce Pascoe’s smash hit 2014 book that argued Indigenous Australians were not just hunter-gatherers but engaged in agriculture, irrigation and construction, won numerous literary prizes, was adapted into a stage performance by Aboriginal dance company Bangarra and has even made its way into school curriculums.

Pascoe’s claims – including that Aboriginal people built homes, villages, parks, dams and wells, selected seeds for harvesting, sewed clothes, ploughed fields, irrigated crops and preserved food in vessels – have long come under fire from right-wing critics, including the magazine Quadrantand Herald Sun columnist Andrew Bolt.

Other experts have also raised doubts, including Australian National University anthropologist Ian Keen, who described the evidence for farming as “deeply problematic”, and renowned historian Geoffrey Blainey, who said there was “no evidence that there was ever a permanent town in pre-1788 Australia with 1000 inhabitants who gained most of their food by farming”, as claimed in Dark Emu.

Now two leading experts – anthropologist Peter Sutton and archaeologist Keryn Walshe – have taken aim at Pascoe in a new book, Farmers or Hunter-Gatherers? The Dark Emu Debate, set to be released by Melbourne University Press next week.

Bruce Pascoe’s Dark Emu has won numerous awards.Source:News Regional Media

“In page after page, Sutton and Walshe accuse Pascoe of a ‘lack of true scholarship’, ignoring Aboriginal voices, dragging respect for traditional Aboriginal culture back into the Eurocentric world of the colonial era, and ‘trimming’ colonial observations to fit his argument,” Rintoul writes.

“They write that while Dark Emu ‘purports to be factual’ it is ‘littered with unsourced material, is poorly researched, distorts and exaggerates many points, selectively emphasises evidence to suit those opinions, and ignores large bodies of information that do not support the author’s opinions’.”

The highly respected academics, who have both spent their careers studying Aboriginal history, write that Dark Emu is “actually not, properly considered, a work of scholarship” and that “its success as a narrative has been achieved in spite of its failure as an account of fact”.

“Pascoe’s approach appears to resemble the old Eurocentric view held by the British conquerors of Aboriginal society,” Dr Sutton writes in the book, according to extracts published by Good Weekend.

“Those were the people who organised mass theft of Aboriginal country and many of whom justified the killing of Aborigines who resisted them, really out of greed and indifference, but often under an ideological flag of social evolutionism. They assumed they had a right to profit from the ‘survival of the fittest’ and were the ‘superior race’. The ‘less advanced’ had to make way for the ‘more advanced’. Pascoe risks taking us back to that fatal shore by resurrecting the interpretation of differing levels of complexity and differing extents of intervention in the environment as degrees of advancement and evolution and cleverness and sophistication.”

Bruce Pascoe reads Dark Emu to Glebe Public School students. Picture: Dylan RobinsonSource:News Corp Australia

He told Good Weekend that the pair began working on a response to Dark Emu in 2019 in order to “set things back to a balanced truthfulness” and “restore the dignity of complex (never ‘mere’) hunter-gathering, and thus First Nations cultural history, that has been eroded due to Dark Emu”.

Dr Walshe, meanwhile, said that when she first tried to read Dark Emu, she was so frustrated by its lack of scholarship that she didn’t finish it.

“I still struggle to believe that this has happened,” she told Good Weekend.

In a written response, Pascoe told the magazine that his book had “encouraged many Australians to recognise the ingenuity and sophistication of the many Aboriginal cultures, societies and land-management practices, which had not previously been brought to mainstream attention”.

“The extent of Aboriginal social and economic organisation has been surprising to many Australians and a nuanced debate needs to be ongoing,” he said, adding it would be “disappointing” if Australia’s understanding of Aboriginal history “digressed to a limiting debate about semantics and nomenclature”.

“Hunter-gatherer and farmer are both settler/colonial labels, and the long prevailing negative interpretation of hunter-gatherer has been used as a weapon against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples (as a justification for terra nullius),” he said.

“Language can be used to help people to see the world differently, to open minds to new ways of seeing. This is what I tried to achieve with Dark Emu.”

Bruce Pascoe (born 1947) is an Aboriginal Australian writer of literary fiction, non-fiction, poetry, essays and children’s literature. As well as his own name, Pascoe has written under the pen names Murray Gray and Leopold Glass. Since August 2020, he has been Enterprise Professor in Indigenous Agriculture at the University of Melbourne.

Dark Emu (book)

Dark Emu cover.jpg

Dark Emu: Black Seeds: Agriculture or Accident? is a 2014 non-fiction book by Bruce Pascoe. It reexamines colonial accounts of Aboriginal people in Australia, and cites evidence of pre-colonial agriculture, engineering and building construction by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. A second edition, published under the title Dark Emu: Aboriginal Australia and the Birth of Agriculture was published in mid-2018, and a version of the book for younger readers, entitled Young Dark Emu: A Truer History, was published in 2019. Both the first and the children’s editions were shortlisted for major awards, and the former won two awards in the New South Wales Premier’s Literary Awards.Dark Emu: Black Seeds: Agriculture or Accident? AuthorBruce PascoeCountryAustraliaLanguageEnglishGenreNon-fiction
HistoryPublication date2014ISBN1921248017

#AceNewsDesk report ………Published: Jun.15: 2021:

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Australian History

(AUSTRALIA) SCAM REPORT: Last year scammers stole close to $34 million collectively from people who identified as culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD), people with disability, and Indigenous #AceNewsDesk report

Australian Aboriginal

#AceNewsReport – June.15: Unfortunately, scheming scammers try to target people who by virtue of their background, disadvantage, language skills or disability may experience vulnerability, and be more likely to fall for their tricks,” Ms Rickard said.

ACCC Report: Culturally and linguistically diverse community lose $22 million to scams in 2020, reports from Indigenous Australians up by 25 per cent: Figures from the latest Targeting Scams report released earlier this week shows losses to the CALD community represented a 60 per cent increase compared to 2019, across 11,700 reports.


“Last year we saw a big increase in losses to scams affecting culturally and linguistically diverse communities,” ACCC Deputy Chair Delia Rickard said.

“Some members of CALD communities suffered higher losses on average than the overall community, accounting for one in every eight dollars lost.”

Investment scams were responsible for $6.3 million in losses, the most costly type of scam for the CALD community.

This was followed by threat based scams, and people from CALD communities lost $6 million to these scams up 248 per cent from 2019.

The Chinese authority scam is a common threat based scam which cost people from the CALD community $4.3 million last year.

These scammers impersonate Chinese authorities and accuse their victims of committing a crime, such as sending a parcel with illegal goods like fake credit cards, and threaten them with deportation or arrest unless they paid money or provided their personal information.

“We received over 2,000 reports about Chinese authority scams in total last year with $7 million lost, and almost a quarter of these were from people with a CALD background,” Ms Rickard said.

“This shows that these scams continued to disproportionately target Mandarin speakers in Australia.”

Other threat based scams involved scammers impersonating Australian government departments such as the Australian Tax Office saying you will be arrested for unpaid tax and the Department of Home Affairs threatening to arrest you and have you deported.

“Australian governments will never threaten you with immediate arrest. Always stop and think about who you might be dealing with, and if you’re not sure whether the call is legitimate, hang up and call the organisation directly using contact details you independently source,” Ms Rickard said.

Scams also impacted Indigenous Australians in 2020. Last year Scamwatch received 3,455 reports with over $2 million in losses from Indigenous Australians. While the losses were 4 per cent lower than those in 2019, the reports increased by nearly 25 per cent.

The most financially damaging scams for Indigenous communities were dating and romance scams, followed by investment scams and online shopping scams.

People who identified as having disability made more than 7,500 reports to Scamwatch, and lost close to $10 million to scams last year. Dating and romance scams accounted for about half of these losses.

More than one third of reporters also said they had lost personal information. Meanwhile, 25 per cent of people without disability reported losing personal information.

“Unfortunately scammers do target all sectors of the community so it is important to stay alert,” Ms Rickard said.

“Remember, never give your credit card details or personal information to anyone who contacts you out of the blue no matter who they say they are, as scammers can do an excellent job impersonating the government and private sector organisations like banks and telephone companies.”

“If you think you have provided your account details to a scammer, contact your bank or financial institution immediately,” Ms Rickard said.

The ACCC has translated the Little Black Book of Scams into ten languages to help the community understand and avoid scams.

The ACCC regularly engages in Indigenous outreach programs and shares scam warnings on the Your Rights Mob Facebook page.

Additional Notes:

Culturally and linguistically diverse communities

  • People from CALD communities represented 5.4 per cent of all reports made to Scamwatch, but 12.6 per cent of all losses for 2020.
  • Investment scams were the most financially damaging with $6.3 million in losses, followed by threat based scams with $6 million and dating and romance scams with $5.6 million.
  • There was also a big increase in investment scams for people from a CALD background – 20 per cent compared to the 6.5 per cent generally.
  • People from CALD communities made 11,702 reports to Scamwatch and lost $22.1 million

People with disability

  • People with disability made 3.5 per cent of all reports to Scamwatch and comprised 5.5 per cent of total losses. 
  • The most financially damaging scams were romance scams with $5.5 million lost, followed by investment scams with $2.6 million and online shopping scams with $242,955.
  • People with disability made 7,543 reports to Scamwatch and lost $9.7 million.

Indigenous Australians

  • Indigenous Australians made up 1.6 per cent of all reports to Scamwatch and 1.1 per cent of total losses.
  • Of the 3,445 reports by Indigenous people, 35.7 per cent involved a loss of personal information. This compares with 25 per cent of reports from non-Indigenous.
  • The scams with the biggest financial losses were dating and romance scams with $590,553, investment scams with $336,794 and online shopping scams with $275,661.
  • Indigenous Australians made 3,445 reports to Scamwatch and lost over $2 million.

#AceNewsDesk report ……Published: Jun.15: 2021:

Editor says #AceNewsDesk reports by and all our posts, also links can be found at here for Twitter and Live Feeds and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com