Common Questions

What is the Sea of Hands?

Australians for Native Title and Reconciliation (ANTaR) is a national network of organisations and individuals working in support of justice for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Australia. During the tide of public concern over the Howard governments initiative to amend the Native Title Act, ANTaR was formed in 1997 as a broad coalition of individuals and community groups including human rights and legal groups, ecumenical groups, trade unions, as well as social justice, arts, educational and women’s [...]

What is the Sea of Hands?2020-05-01T14:24:41+10:00

Why do we celebrate NAIDOC Week?

National Aboriginal & Islander Day Observance Committee (NAIDOC) Week has a long history within the Indigenous community. It is of great importance to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people as a time to respect and revere some of the heroes involved in past struggles and to celebrate cultural survival. Generally observed in all capital cities and in many regional areas during the first full week of July, NAIDOC celebrations involve a week of community-based activities flag-raising ceremonies, concerts, religious [...]

Why do we celebrate NAIDOC Week?2020-05-01T14:23:59+10:00

What will saying Sorry achieve?

One of the many recommendations of the 1997 Bringing Them Home report was that there be an apology to Indigenous people from the institutions involved in establishing and implementing the laws and policies that sanctioned forced removals of children. These institutions include state and national parliaments, police forces, religious organisations, and other non-government agencies. The recommendation was made in recognition of the fact that saying sorry is an act of compassion, understanding and healing. Acknowledgement and apology are essential [...]

What will saying Sorry achieve?2020-05-01T14:23:22+10:00

Who are the Stolen Generations?

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children were forcibly removed from their families and communities in Australia from the early nineteenth century onwards. While the circumstances of these separations varied, Indigenous children in most states could be legally removed by governments without parental consent or the need to prove neglect before a court. This represents one of the most widespread and damaging assaults on Indigenous Australians, and the children affected have become known as the Stolen Generations. Indigenous children represented [...]

Who are the Stolen Generations?2020-05-01T14:22:30+10:00

What do Land Rights have to do with our area of the Northern Beaches?

It is important to remember that issues of land do not have relevance only for regional areas or far off parts of Australia. Right here on the Northern Beaches and in greater Sydney, issues of land are acutely relevant, both to Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people. Even with the dispossession of the Guringai people, there are still a small number of descendants of the traditional custodians living on The Northern Beaches. There are numbers of Aboriginal people who do live [...]

What do Land Rights have to do with our area of the Northern Beaches?2020-05-01T14:21:50+10:00

What’s the difference between Native Title and Land Rights?

Land rights are not the same thing as native title. As outlined in Question 4 above, native title is about recognising Indigenous peoples' continuing connection to their land and waters in accordance with their own traditional laws and customs. Native Title is not a grant created through legislation but exists alongside Australian common law.  As such, native title pre-exists the Crown and survives colonisation where Indigenous people have maintained a continuous connection with their country and where their native [...]

What’s the difference between Native Title and Land Rights?2020-05-01T14:20:56+10:00

What are Mabo, Wik and Native Title?

Native Title is the name given by Australian law to Indigenous peoples' traditional rights to their lands and waters. Those rights can range from a relationship similar to full ownership through to the right to go onto the land for ceremonies or to hunt, fish, or gather food and bush medicines. To have their native title rights recognised, the Indigenous group has to prove they still have connection with their country according to their own traditional laws. The first [...]

What are Mabo, Wik and Native Title?2020-05-01T14:17:33+10:00

Do any Aboriginal people live in the Northern Beaches area?

According to the 1996 Census, 1707 residents in the Northern Sydney Region identified themselves as being Indigenous Australian (1403 Aboriginal and 304 Torres Strait Islander). Of these, 702 lived in the Manly Warringah Pittwater area. These residents originate from many different clan and language groups around the country and have moved to the area mainly for family and employment reasons. Although they are not traditional owners of the land, most would relate closely to the Aboriginal culture and heritage [...]

Do any Aboriginal people live in the Northern Beaches area?2020-05-01T14:16:45+10:00

Who is responsible for caring for the Aboriginal sites in our area?

Along the east coast of Australia there is archaeological evidence for Aboriginal occupation extending back beyond 60,000 years. One of the richest provinces in Australia, the Sydney Basin is home to thousands of Aboriginal archaeological sites. This cultural legacy is incomparable and some have said this immense outdoor rock art gallery is worthy of World Heritage status. Though the specific stories associated with these sites are now not generally known, there remain thousands of identified sites in the region, [...]

Who is responsible for caring for the Aboriginal sites in our area?2020-05-01T14:15:32+10:00

What is the Aboriginal history of our area, Sydney’s Northern Beaches?

Sydney Basin country traditionally belongs to people of several nations or language groups, including Guringai, Darug, and Dharawal (alternate spellings are Kuring-gai, Dharug and Tharawal). The lands of the Darkinjung and Gandangara converge with the Sydney Basin to the northwest and southwest respectively. The clans of Sydney's Northern shore and beaches including the Carigal, Cammeraigal, Gayimai and Cannalgal are understood by many to belong to the Guringai language group, whose country extends from the Lane Cove River to the [...]

What is the Aboriginal history of our area, Sydney’s Northern Beaches?2020-05-01T14:13:38+10:00
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