Celebrating NAIDOC week

NAIDOC Week kicked off yesterday, 8 November with celebrations and ceremony across the country.

Usually held each July to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, the annual event was delayed this year due to COVID-19.

NAIDOC Week came about after almost a century of protest and activism for the rights of Aboriginal people in Australia.

What started as a day of protest and mourning early in the first half of the 1900s has evolved into a week of activities that highlight not only activism and a fight for rights, but also celebration and recognition.

This year’s theme: Always Was, Always Will Be. recognises that Aboriginal people have occupied and cared for the continent for over 65,000 years.

While councils highlight community and culture during the week, LGNSW president, Linda Scott has used the event to encourage Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander to have a greater voice in local government and stand for next year’s New South Wales council elections.

“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island people represent a vital voice in local communities, but they are under-represented in local government. Currently there are just 24 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander councillors across our state.

“We are keen to work with the NSW Government to address that through a properly coordinated and resourced campaign to encourage Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to run for council in the next local government elections in September 2021.