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Queensland reserves



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MINISTER FOR ABORIGINAL AFFAIRS Senator the Hon. Peter Baume ' r

. QUEENSLAND RESERVES

STATEMENT BY THE MINISTER FOR ABORIGINAL AFFAIRS, SENATOR THE HON. PETER B A U M E .......

The Commonwealth Government believes that four principles must be upheld in the resolution of the future of the Queensland State Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Reserves. These are:

. The integrity of the present reserve boundaries be maintained;

. Secure tenure for occupants and preservation of their rights to use the land;

. Local communities to play a significant role in the management of the Reserves;

. Full consultation with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people before any decisions are m a d e .

There may be several ways to satisfy these goals. I do not intend to endorse or to criticise any proposal until it has been outlined in full for public discussion.

Although it is not yet clear what the Queensland Government will finally propose, the Queensland Premier's tentative thinking about 50-year leases is better than the present situation where reserve status can be abolished overnight. Of course, perpetual

leasehold or freehold would be even better.

I welcome the promise of the Premier to consult widely with Reserve communities and look forward to learning the results of these consultations. They will be particularly important in identifying appropriate systems for the management of the lands and

communities.

I have consulted and will continue to consult with Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders and with Queensland Ministers as appropriate.

Canberra, A.C.T.

23 July, 1981 B30/81