Victoria steps on gas toward treaty

Victoria's Treaty Advancement Commissioner Jill Gallagher addresses a community forum at the Wauthaurong Aboriginal Community Co-op in Geelong.
Victoria's Treaty Advancement Commissioner Jill Gallagher addresses a community forum at the Wauthaurong Aboriginal Community Co-op in Geelong.

As Victoria continues to move towards a treaty, Aboriginal people from across the state have been invited to a treaty gathering at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

The Victorian Treaty Advancement Commission is holding the statewide gathering to give people the chance to discuss details of the Aboriginal Representative Body and learn more about the next steps to treaty.

Aboriginal Victorians are set to go to the polls early next year to elect the representative body to enter treaty talks with the state government.

The commission said it would present and seek the views of community members on a proposed model for the Aboriginal Representative Body.

There would also be a session on the election process for the body, including enrolling, running and voting.

“The statewide gathering will mark a significant milestone on the pathway to treaty,” Victorian Treaty Advancement Commissioner Jill Gallagher, a Gunditjmara woman, said.

“Aboriginal Victorians have driven the treaty process the whole way along and this gathering will be an opportunity for community to have their say on the proposed model for the Aboriginal Representative Body.

“Every Aboriginal person living in Victoria will be able to vote in the Representative Body elections in 2019.”

The state entered historic new ground when key legislation in the move towards treaty passed through the Upper House in June.

The ‘Treaty Statewide Gathering’ will be held in the Members Dining Room at the MCG on September 25 from 9am to 4pm.

People can register online here: www.treatystatewide2018.com.au/

Live streaming will also be available for those unable to attend.

By Wendy Caccetta

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