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The NSW Government is committed to a 12-month consultation process with Aboriginal communities on their aspirations for a Treaty framework or other formal agreement making process, to be led by three dedicated Commissioners.

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Establishing the Aboriginal Languages Act – Message from the Head of AA


One of my proudest achievements for Aboriginal Affairs last year was our role in the passing of the Aboriginal Languages Act 2017.

The Act acknowledges the importance of Aboriginal languages to Aboriginal people and all people in NSW. It was developed through extensive conversations with Aboriginal languages community and other key stakeholders.

Governance arrangements to guide the initial establishment of the Act are in progress, which includes the Aboriginal Languages Establishment Advisory Group (ALEAG), which held its first meeting today.

The nine-member ALEAG includes language experts and community stakeholders from across NSW, with members endorsed by the Ministers for Aboriginal Affairs.

The ALEAG encourages participation and contribution from all community members and groups. The group seeks to establish a process for ongoing conversations with community.

The Act is a critical element for policy reform under the objectives of OCHRE, the NSW Government’s community-based plan for Aboriginal affairs in NSW.

By reinvigorating Aboriginal languages, communities can strengthen connections with Aboriginal culture, story, land, heritage and place.

NSW is the first State in Australia with legislation to acknowledge the significance of First Languages and it would not have been possible without your hard work and dedication.

There is a long way to go before Aboriginal languages are spoken widely in NSW, but today we took another big step in the right direction.

Jason Ardler
Head of Aboriginal Affairs NSW

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