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sunday afternoon activists club

Which state/territory is the most 'potentially progressive' around Indigenous Rights? #saaclub #auspol

2 min read

I've been sharing a few posts of creative activism interest on our facebook and twitter feeds recently but this one merits a little blog post, methinks.

On Feb 1st - our first gathering - we will be discussing some of the work I've recently been doing with the Brisbane Aboriginal Sovereign Embassy and Grandmothers Against Removals. You'll be seeing more from me about this ongoing work and Australia's relationship (or lack of) with our First Nations Peoples. On that note I encourage you to join the Canberra protests tomorrow (to mark Invasion Day) and on Feb 13th (to mark the 7th Anniversary of the national 'apology').

But this is the article I've just been sent:

The Feds have just granted Native Title in Eyre Peninsula to the Barngarla people. Not only will it be fascinating to watch how this decision nuts out given the current whitefella settlements (and 20 mining companies!), but the statement made by Justice Mansfield mentions an interesting term: "effective sovereignty".

"In my view, [the] material supports the conclusion that in the period between effective sovereignty and the present day, the Barngarla tribe as it existed at sovereignty has continued to exist, and the present claim group is the continuation of the original Barngarla people."

This begs the question, "What exactly does "effective sovereignty" mean and how can it be built upon?"

Combine that with the rights embedded in the founding documents of the State of SA, within the Letters Patent of 1836 signed by King George IV, which say:

"Provided always, that nothing in these our letters patent contained
shall affect or be construed to affect the rights of any Aboriginal
Natives of the said Province to the actual occupation or enjoyment in
their own Persons or in the Persons of their Descendants of any Lands
therein now actually occupied or enjoyed by such Natives."

Of course it'd help if this Letters Patent was actually being adhered to, but in theory, at least... does that make SA the most potentially progressive Indigenous Rights whitefella-occupied state/territory in Australia?

Asking because I'd genuinely like to know... let's have a competition :D