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Changes to protect State’s Aboriginal heritage

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The State Government will today release the draft Aboriginal Heritage Amendment Bill 2014 which aims to ensure Western Australia’s Aboriginal heritage is properly protected and managed.

Aboriginal Affairs Minister Peter Collier said the Amendment Bill would make the State’s heritage protection more contemporary.

“This is the first meaningful change to the way we manage the protection of our Aboriginal heritage in 33 years,” Mr Collier said.

“The pace of economic development in recent years, particularly within the mining and construction sectors, has highlighted inadequacies in the current legislation.

“Modest changes are required to ensure that our Aboriginal heritage – a State asset of significant importance – can continue to be protected.

“I am confident that the suggested amendments offer a balanced suite of reforms that will satisfy the needs of those who work within the boundaries of the Act, and that they will deliver an environment of certainty, fairness and consistency.”

The Department of Aboriginal Affairs will commence an eight week period of consultation today on the proposed amendments and interested parties are invited to provide feedback via written submission by Wednesday, August 6, 2014.

Fact File

  • The draft Aboriginal Heritage Amendment Bill 2014, a series of fact sheets and feedback forms are available for download on the Department of Aboriginal Affairs website at http://www.daa.wa.gov.au/
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