September 18, 2018

Engaging More Aboriginal Victorians On Treaty

The Andrews Labor Government is engaging more Aboriginal Victorians in the state’s historic Treaty process.

Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Natalie Hutchins today announced $370,000 for seven Aboriginal organisations, including six Traditional Owner groups, through the first round of the Treaty Community Engagement Program.

The Program will support Traditional Owners groups and other organisations and businesses to engage with Victorian Aboriginal communities as well as non-Aboriginal Victorians on Treaty. This will provide further insight on how self-determination and treaty can strengthen Victorian Aboriginal communities.

The Program will also help ensure the treaty process continues to be guided by Aboriginal voices and prepare the Aboriginal community for the establishment of the Aboriginal Representative Body and eventual Treaty negotiations.

Insights obtained through the Program will be used by the Victorian Treaty Advancement Commission as it works to establish the Aboriginal Representative Body as part of the next phase of the treaty process.

The Program offers two kinds of grants: Treaty Circle Grants and Treaty Engagement Grants.

Treaty Circle Grant will support small, community-led consultations on key issues related to treaty.

Treaty Engagement Grants will support in-depth, ongoing engagement with Victorian Aboriginal communities, as well as research on key issues relating to treaty and self-determination.

A second round of applications for the Program have been received and are currently under consideration.

The Andrews Labor Government has provided more than $37.5 million to support the whole treaty process and promote self-determination among Victorian Aboriginal communities.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Natalie Hutchins

This is self-determination in practice – giving Aboriginal organisations the resources they need to consult, engage  and lead the treaty process.”

“Treaty will have benefits for all Victorians – promoting reconciliation, fostering pride in Aboriginal culture and helping to heal the wounds of the past.”