Department of the Environment

Archived media releases and speeches

The Hon Tony Burke MP

Minister for Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities

Gillard Government boosts Indigenous heritage protection

Media release
24 June 2011

Federal Heritage Minister, Tony Burke, today announced that the Gillard Government would provide funding to help identify, protect and share Australia's Indigenous heritage.

Mr Burke said the Government would provide more than $2.7 million for 36 Indigenous heritage projects that will help community groups and individuals identify, conserve and promote the heritage values of places important to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, across Australia.

"Indigenous history and heritage occupies a special place in our country's identity, and it is important that we protect these cultural sites for future generations," Mr Burke said.

Projects that have received funding include:

  • The Sacred Sea Places of the Groote Archipelago project (NT): funding to identify and record sacred sites in sea country located in the Groote Archipelago, relating to four dreaming track stories and nine totemic figures.
  • Baiame's Ngunnhu Heritage Project (NSW): funding to install bilingual interpretive signage and continue the implementation of a Conservation Heritage Management Plan for the National Heritage Listed fish traps at Brewarrina, including maintaining the riverbank and controlling weed infestation.
  • Wongatha Keeping Place (WA): funding to enable Wongatha elders to establish a keeping place for sacred objects at Morapoi Station in the Goldfields Region of WA.
  • Bunya Mountains Assessment for Aboriginal Cultural Values Project (Qld): funding to record the Indigenous heritage values of the Bunya Mountains in south-east Queensland.
  • The Apara Springs Fencing Project (SA): funding to construct a fence to protect the Apara Springs, an important cultural site located in the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara lands, north-west SA, from damage by feral animals.
  • The Devilbend Natural Feature Reserve - Conservation of Aboriginal Cultural Places Project (Vic): funding to undertake conservation works at four Aboriginal cultural sites in the reserve, on the Mornington Peninsula.

"This funding is an important step to help us protect, preserve and promote Indigenous heritage," Mr Burke said

Funding for these projects was provided from the Indigenous Heritage Program, part of the Government's commitment to Closing the Gap on Indigenous disadvantage by contributing to the overall well-being of Indigenous communities and supporting employment opportunities for Indigenous Australians.