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Tas Parliament to acknowledge traditional owners

Extract from Australian Broadcasting Corporation - ABC Online, on 7 April 2004


The Tasmanian Parliament resumes today with a formal acknowledgement of the traditional owners of the land on which Parliament stands.

The Speaker of the House of Assembly Michael Polley says the acknowledgement of the Mouheneener people will make Tasmania's Parliament one of the few in the world to recognise Indigenous owners of land.

Mr Polley says the recognition of the Mouheneener people will occur on three annual sittings of Parliament: the first session of the year, the Budget sittings and the spring sittings.

He says the short statement of recognition will also be made before the first sitting after an election.

"This is the first time at a state or federal level that a formal statement's made, and this will be made four times a year recognising our local Indigenous people," he said.

"It's been done at a local government level and community level for quite some decades but never formally at a parliamentary or, as I understand it, at a national parliament.

"It's time, it recognises the Indigenous tribe of the area, as well as the contribution made by the first settlers of our nation."


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