The Aboriginal Heritage Council met for their regular monthly meeting on 29 October 2021 in Hobart.
Members made further amendments to the draft Engagement and Consultation Guide and Checklist which has been developed over a period of several months. The Checklist is a document the Council hopes will help improve the standard of consultation and engagement undertaken by proponents with the Aboriginal Community. Members also approved letters to stakeholders which will be sent with printed copies of the Council’s inaugural Year in Review publication in November.
Council considered one permit application, resolving not to oppose the issuance of the permit but determining to encourage the use of interpretive signage in the project area, to tell the story of its Aboriginal heritage.
DPIPWE Deputy Secretary for National Parks and Wildlife, Jason Jacobi, and members discussed the progress of the Tourism Master Plan for the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area, and the Cultural Heritage Decision Protocol which is to be developed as part of the Plan. Members strongly expressed their preference that the Decision Protocol should be developed by an Aboriginal Person; or if an Aboriginal Person with the appropriate skills was not available, by someone who could work closely with the Aboriginal Community. Members also noted the importance of the dominant voice in any interpretive work being place-based Community.
Jason and the Council discussed the recent Arthur-Pieman Conservation Area Tracks decision, with members seeking to understand whether they, as a Council, have any input into what is done with the $10M pledged by the Tasmanian Government to manage tracks. Members determined to write to the Minister and seek further information on the matter.
In Other Business, Council members agreed to arrange a visit to sites in the Northwest early in the new year and received an update on the development of a video Welcome for the Council’s website. Primary footage for the video was shot on the Bedlam Walls track in early October 2021. It is intended for the Welcome to feature on the Council’s website by the end of November 2021.
The next meeting of the Aboriginal Heritage Council will be held on 26 November 2021 in Hobart.