Case Study

  • ANTaR–Gurindji Strike

    Last published: 31 May 2022Author: ANTaR National

    On 16 August 1975, Prime Minister Gough Whitlam poured a handful of red soil into the hands of Gurindji elder Vincent Lingiari. The act symbolised the legal transfer of the Wave Hill station to the Gurindji people. The first time the Commonwealth government handed Aboriginal land back to its original owners, the moment marked a new stage in the national land rights movement. Even so, the formal transfer consisted of only a limited portion of their Country. It took another 45 years before the Gurindji’s native title rights and interests over their Country was formally recognised in Australian law. 

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  • ANTaR–Timber Creek

    Last published: 31 May 2022Author: ANTaR National

    In 2019, the High Court of Australia handed down the landmark Timber Creek decision. The Court awarded a total of $2.5m in compensation for both economic and cultural loss, including interest. In ‘the most significant [case]… since Mabo’, the High Court ruled for the first time on compensation for the extinguishment of Native Title.  

     

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  • ANTaR–The Wik Decision

    Last published: 24 May 2022Author: ANTaR National

    The decision in Wik Peoples v Queensland was the ‘high point’ of common law native tile. The subsequent political reaction demonstrates the vulnerability of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ rights in Australian law. The story of the Wik decision further emphasises the need for a constitutionally entrenched First Nations Voice. 

     

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  • ANTaR–The Mabo Decision

    Last published: 24 May 2022Author: ANTaR National

    In Mabo v Queensland (No 2), the High Court of Australia overruled two centuries of injustice. Before Mabo, Australian law ignored the pre-colonial property rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. In Mabo, the Court ruled that Australian law could recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ rights and interests in land.

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  • ANTaR–The Yorta Yorta Decision

    Last published: 24 May 2022Author: ANTaR National

    In 1939, Yorta Yorta man William Cooper outlined the simple injustice of British colonisation. Cooper had protested for many years, seeking to change Australian law to better recognise the rights and interests of First Nations peoples. In 1935, as Secretary of the Australian Aborigines League, Cooper secured the signatures of almost 2,000 Aboriginal people calling for representation in parliament, voting rights, and land rights. In 1938, along with Jack Patten and William Ferguson, he led the first ‘Day of Mourning’ pursuing citizenship and equality. Cooper’s determination and persistence was shared by First Nations peoples across the country who struggled against a legal framework that denied their rights.

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  • Case Note: The Timber Creek Compensation Case

    Last published: 1 July 2021Author: Clare Graham-Stewart for ANTaR

    In one of the most significant native title cases since Mabo, this was the first time that compensation for both economic and cultural loss had been measured and awarded under the Native Title Act. The case signals a huge development in native title law and sets an important legal precedent which may prove to have a profound impact on compensation claims and native title generally.

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  • Our Choices Our Voices

    Last published: 21 March 2019Author: Close the Gap Campaign

    A report prepared by the Lowitja Institute for the Close the Gap Steering Committee.

    Following on from the 10-year review in 2018, the 2019 report identifies urgent prioritie themes of the Close the Gap Campaign such as:

    • Targeted, needs-based primary health care
    • Responsive health care system
    • Good housing for good health.

    The success stories highlighted in this report demonstrate that when Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are involved in the design of the services they need, we are far more likely to achieve success.

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