House debates

Monday, 21 June 2021


Appropriation Bill (No. 1) 2021-2022; Consideration in Detail

6:22 pm

Photo of Bert Van ManenBert Van Manen (Forde, Liberal Party) Share this | Hansard source

I shall do, at your request. I understand the comments the member for Macnamara has made. I wasn't in the chamber for the member for Lingiari's comments, but I have no doubt, given his long time in his electorate and his close relationship to his local Indigenous people, that it was probably much along the lines of what the member for Macnamara had to say. I would like to acknowledge the member for Lingiari and his work over many years. I know he will be sadly missed, heading into his retirement.

I would like to focus more practically, in the short time I have to speak on the appropriation bill, on the Indigenous Affairs portfolio and some of the stuff that we're doing locally in my community of Forde. The Indigenous population represents about three to four per cent of my electorate. There are some key Indigenous organisations in my electorate that I have quite a bit to do with. Whether it is the Yugambeh Museum in Beenleigh, the Beenleigh Housing and Development Company or the various elders groups, all these groups do a tremendous amount across my electorate not only to improve the wellbeing and the outcomes for the local Indigenous community but also, importantly, to work to build a bridge between our local Indigenous community and the broader community. There are people like Peter Eather, the chairperson and president of Beenleigh Housing and Development Company; Will Davis, the CEO of Beenleigh Housing and Development Company; Rory O'Connor, who runs the Yugambeh Museum and is involved in a lot of work in the language space; and the team at Spirits of the Red Sand and the tourism work that they're doing in that space.

I look with pride across the work that all of these groups do, at the effort that they put in each and every day for their people, for the Indigenous people who have been part of our country for 60,000 years. They want to ensure that they maintain the language. They want to ensure that they are able to tell the stories of their people not just for the current generations but for the generations to come. It is critically important that those stories continue to be told, as it provides a foundation for the future of their culture.


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