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Australia Celebrates Reconciliation Week

Australia Celebrates Reconciliation Week

27 May 2011 - National Reconciliation Week is an annual celebration from 27 May – 3 June and is a time for all Australians to reflect on their shared histories, contributions and achievements. The week is framed by two key events in Australia’s history which provide strong symbols of the aspirations for reconciliation.

May 27 marks the anniversary of Australia’s most successful referendum and a defining event in the nation’s history. The 1967 Referendum saw over 90 per cent of Australians vote to give the Commonwealth the power to make laws for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and recognise them in the national census.

On 3 June, 1992, the High Court of Australia delivered its landmark Mabo decision which legally recognised that Indigenous people had a special relationship to the land that existed prior to colonisation and still exists today. This recognition paved the way for Indigenous land rights called Native Title.

Each year National Reconciliation Week celebrates the rich culture and history of the First Australians. It is the ideal time for everyone to join the reconciliation conversation and to think about how to turn around the disadvantage experienced by many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

The theme for National Reconciliation Week 2011 is Let’s talk recognition and encourages all Australians to join the national conversation about the value of recognition.

ENDS

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