Wave Hill descendants highlight continuing injustices at 50th Walkoff anniversary

No Justice Just Us

Descendants of the Gurindji stockmen and their families who walked off Wave Hill Station in 1966 have used the 50th anniversary to highlight continuing injustices against Aboriginal Australians. The group is angry at Northern Territory and federal government responses to the recent ABC TV Four Corners program on the Don Dale Detention Centre in Darwin that showed the use of tear gas, beatings and chair restraints on youth detainees. “We are people with Gurindji cultural affiliations who wish to express our total lack of faith in the justice system in relation to the ever-increasing incarceration of our people in detention centres, gaols and similar institutions around the country,” a statement released today said.

“We cannot sit by and be silent while our children – “We cannot sit by and be silent while our children – our future generations - are being irreparably damaged.” It outlines a list of demands endorsed by ‘concerned Australians’. “We ask people who want to see this situation addressed to contact your local and federal members, and the Prime Minister in support of our demands, which are:

·      The immediate release of the youth portrayed on the 4 Corners program 

·      PM Turnbull to remove the NT Govt from any involvement in the Royal Commission other than as witnesses;

·      PM Turnbull to provide appropriate resources and funding be made available as a priority for Indigenous people to be self-determining and responsible for devising solutions, programs and services in every social and economic sphere to address the problems Indigenous Peoples experience, which have been created by successive governments;

·      The Don Dale Juvenile Centre closed and responsibilities be moved to a provider who conducts education, restoration and rehabilitation services. The NT Govt to provide suitable accommodation designed for proper rehabilitation and reintegration back into society;

·      That every Australian to never forget the images they saw on Four Corners because the speedy decision to call for a Royal Commission is designed by government to silence the masses by sending a covert message: “It’s fine Australia, we have it sorted.”

A banner, designed specifically for the group, was unveiled at Wave Hill 50th anniversary celebrations held at Wattie Creek today.

“Reflected in this child’s eyes are the eyes of concerned citizens of Australia and the world who expect positive, not punitive action – now.”

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