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Media Release
Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment

Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park Finalist in National Reconciliation Award


27 May 1997
(50/97)

Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park was one of three finalists in the Culture/Land category of the Australian Reconciliation Awards, recognising the outstanding joint management achieved by the Aboriginal Traditional Owners (the Anangu people ( and the Commonwealth Government's Parks Australia.

Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill has congratulated the custodians of the Park for being acknowledged as an exceptional example of reconciliation in Australia.

The park was selected as a finalist for the national awards from almost 300 nominations Australia-wide. Senator John Herron also congratulated Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park on being selected as finalists in the awards, which were presented in Melbourne tonight as part of the Australia Reconciliation Convention.

"The successful partnership between indigenous and non-indigenous people (Piranpa) in this venture holds lessons for all of us in achieving reconciliation," said Senator Hill.

"This accolade is much deserved recognition for the commitment of the Traditional Owners and Parks Australia to achieve day-to-day joint management for the benefit of the Anangu people and all visitors to the region.

"The park's Board of Management successfully brings together indigenous and non-indigenous expertise to care for the country.

"The land management burning practices in the park exemplify this approach, combining traditional burning techniques and knowledge with western technology, such as satellite imagery, to achieve an effective synthesis of Anangu and Piranpa knowledge.

"It is also shown in the way Aboriginal culture enriches visitor experience at Uluru. Anangu worked with Parks Australia staff in the design of the Park's outstanding cultural centre, which was runner-up in the 1996 Royal Australian Institute of Architects Award for the best public building in Australia.

"The park's management arrangements received UNESCO's highest honour, the Picasso Gold Medal in 1995, in recognition that Australia had set new international standards for world heritage management at Uluru."

In 1985 ownership of the land was vested in the Uluru-Kata Tjuta Aboriginal Land Trust, representing the Traditional Owners, and leased back for 99 years to Parks Australia to manage the area as a national park. More than 310,000 people visit the park each year.

Contact:
Matt Brown (Senator Hill) (06) 277 7640 or 0419 693 515
Joanne Willmot (Chairperson, park's Board of Management)
c/- (03) 9639 0555 or (06) 250 0782 for duration of Convention
John Hicks (Parks Australia North) (08) 8946 4300
Julian Barry (Park Manager) (08) 8956 2699 (b.h) or (08) 8956

Commonwealth of Australia