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Source: State of Tasmania Government

9 November 2020

Roger Jaensch, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs

NAIDOC Week 2020 is an important time to celebrate and learn more about the history, heritage and culture of the First Tasmanians.

This year’s theme is ‘Always Was, Always Will Be’, acknowledging that our First People have lived on and cared for this continent for over 65,000 years and continue to do so today – the world’s oldest living culture.

COVID-19 has meant that NAIDOC week is a little later, and being celebrated a little differently this year, but there are still plenty of events on this week for Tasmanians to get involved in.

Today, to start NAIDOC week, I was honoured to attend an unveiling of artworks by Aboriginal painter Janice Ross at the Royal Hobart Hospital, and I am looking forward to attending more events as the week progresses.

The Tasmanian Government is committed to Resetting our Relationship with Tasmanian Aboriginal communities, through recognition, advancing reconciliation and working to achieve real outcomes.

Aboriginal people are now recognised as Tasmania’s First People in the Tasmanian Constitution Act, we have updated the Aboriginal and Dual Naming Policy and we have strengthened the Aboriginal Heritage Act, and are undertaking a major review into the Act.

Most recently, we have taken another step towards improving outcomes for Tasmanian Aboriginal people, with the signing of the new National Agreement on Closing the Gap, and are now working closely with Tasmanian Aboriginal communities to develop Tasmania’s first Implementation Plan.

We know there is still more to be done and we will continue to deliver on our commitment to advance reconciliation and reset the relationship with Aboriginal communities.