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2019

  1. 21 May

    The International Council on Monuments and Sites, which works for the conservation and protection of cultural heritage places around the world, officially recommends world heritage status for the Budj Bim cultural landscape, a 6,600-year-old, highly sophisticated aquaculture system developed by the Gunditjmara people in south-west Victoria. If successful, it would become the first Australian site listed exclusively for its Aboriginal cultural value.

  2. 25 May

    Prime Minister Scott Morrison appoints Ken Wyatt as Australia's first-ever Minister for Indigenous Australians who is actually Aboriginal.

  3. June

    Yorta Yorta soprano Deborah Cheetham premières Eumeralla, a War Requiem for Peace, a performance sung entirely in the reclaimed Gunditjmara language, and sold out weeks in advance.

  4. 8 June

    Ashley Barty wins the French Open tennis Grand Slam singles title in Paris as only the second Aboriginal woman (after Evonne Goolagong-Cawley) and is ranked World Number 2.

  5. 24 June

    After defeating German Julia Görges in the the Birmingham Classic, Ngaragu woman Ash Barty becomes the first Australian woman in 43 years to reach the top of the tennis singles rankings, after Wiradjuri woman Evonne Goolagong's triumph in 1976.

  6. 6 July

    After a 17-year campaign, the Budj Bim Cultural Landscape near Portland, a 6,600-year-old Aboriginal aquaculture site in south-west Victoria, is added to the UNESCO World Heritage List. Older than the pyramids, the site proves that Aboriginal people built channels and pools to harvest eels, and also permanent stone houses. The site is considered one of the largest and oldest aquaculture sites in the world and became the first Australian World Heritage site to be nominated exclusively for Aboriginal cultural values.

  7. 9 July

    A class action Hans Pearson took to the federal court in September 2016 on behalf of an estimated 10,000 Aboriginal workers in Queensland who had their wages stolen last century is settled with the state government for $190m. His class action covered 1939 to 1972, when he and his fellow Aboriginal workers had their pay given to the state under the Aboriginals Protection and Restriction of the Sale of Opium Act 1897. It is Australia’s fifth-largest class action settlement.

  8. 14 July

    The Queensland government launches the “Tracks to Treaty” commitment, aimed to give Aboriginal communities greater self-determination and better delivery of services, lift the representation of Aboriginal voices to government, and begin work on negotiating one or more treaties to create a positive shared future.

    [Tracks to Treaty is about] understanding our past, our shared history… but also telling the truth in all of that, and ensuring that truth then lays the path for the future generations. — Leeanne Enoch, Environment Minister and Quandamooka woman [1]

  9. 1 August

    Elders bury the remains of 11 Kaurna people in the Glenelg area, SA, which had returned to country from the UK to Canberra earlier this year. The remains of another 800 Kaurna people are still in storage at SA Museum warehouses. [2]

  10. 10 September

    Dujuan, a 12-year-old Arrernte/Garrwa boy from central Australia, speaks at the UN Human Rights Council demanding the Australian government to stop sending 10-year-old children to to prison and support Aboriginal-led education models. All Australian states and territories allow 10-year-old children to be arrested, charged and sent to prison. Raising the age of criminal responsibility from 10 to 14 would bring Australian standards into line with international law. [3]

  11. 10 September

    The Illinois State Museum in the USA agrees to unconditionally return 42 culturally significant objects of the Aranda people of Central Australia, and Bardi Jawi people of the northern Dampier Peninsula in Western Australia. The Aboriginal nations plan to return them to country and use them in the maintenance and revival of cultural practices, and support intergenerational knowledge transfer.

    The Return of Cultural Heritage project identified some 95,000 Aboriginal objects held in more than 200 overseas collecting institutions around the world. [4]

  12. 16 September

    Voting opens for representatives to the First Peoples’ Assembly in Victoria, which will help determine the framework for a treaty. More than 30,000 Victorian Aboriginal people are eligible to vote for 73 leaders until 20 October. It is the first time Aboriginal people have ever been able to vote for such an assembly. [5]

    We cannot underestimate that power the assembly will give to that [treaty] negotiating. For the first time, we have an elected voice in Victoria. — Jill Gallagher, treaty advancement commissioner [5]

  13. 17 October

    The first of 26 statewide public consultation sessions about a treaty with Aboriginal people in Queensland is held in Cairns. The sessions invite Queenslanders to have a say about treaty, share what it means to them, and what a treaty could look like.

  14. 26 October

    34 years to the day since the Anangu people received the land rights for the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park, the board closes the Uluru climb after a unanimous decision made in 2017.

  15. 4 November

    A Vegemite advertisement introducing 'Bartymite'.
    In celebration of Ash Barty's win, Bega, manufacturer of Vegemite, renamed its product temporarily to 'Bartymite'.

    Ngaragu woman Ash Barty wins the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) Finals in Shenzhen, China, becoming the first Australian woman to win the season-ending tournament since Evonne Goolagong Cawley won the crown for a second time in 1976. She is also the first Australian woman since rankings were introduced in 1973 to finish the year as world number one. Her A$6.4 million prize packet is the biggest winner's cheque in tennis history. In celebration, Barty's sponsor Vegemite released a limited edition called "Bartymite" – only the the second time in Vegemite's history that the name had been changed, and the first time with an individual's name. [6]

  16. 28 November

    Germany's State of Saxony hands over the ancestral remains of 42 Aboriginal people in Leipzig.

  17. 25 December

    The Tribal Warrior yacht with the first all-Aboriginal crew, including skipper Wayne Jones, takes part in the Sydney to Hobart race as the as the first official Aboriginal entrant. It completes the journey in 4 days and 23:53 hours. The Tribal Warrior is named after the Tribal Warrior Aboriginal Corporation, a maritime training program mentoring young Indigenous people at risk.

2020

  1. January

    Opera Australia revives the musical Bran Nue Dae, 30 years after the original debuted in 1990. The musical achieved popular and critical acclaim for giving Aboriginal voices centre stage, tackling tough issues with humour and challenging mainstream perceptions of Aboriginal people. It tours Sydney in January, Perth (February), Brisbane (July) and Adelaide (August) among other locations. Aboriginal director Rachel Perkins made it into a movie in 2009.

  2. 16 January

    The National Basketball League announces an inaugural Indigenous Round (Round 18) set to take place from January 29 to February 2. All games include a Welcome to Country and each team wears uniforms designed by local Aboriginal artists.

  3. 26 January

    Ngaragu woman Ash Barty is named Young Australian of the Year 2020. She is recognised for inspiring many Aboriginal peoples not only in her role as a National Indigenous Tennis Ambassador for Tennis Australia or her sporting career but in her down-to-earth, kind-hearted personality and resilience.

References

View article sources (6)

[1] 'Queensland launches path to treaty with state's Indigenous people', The Guardian 14/7/2019
[2] 'Ancestral remains of the Kaurna people returned to country from UK in emotional Adelaide ceremony', ABC News 1/8/2019
[3] 'Aboriginal child to address UN Human Rights Council and urge Australia to stop sending 10 year olds to prison', Human Rights Law Centre 9/9/2019
[4] 'Cultural heritage material to be returned to Aranda and Bardi Jawi communities from overseas', AIATSIS 10/9/2019
[5] [5a] 'Voting opens for representatives to Victoria’s First Peoples’ Assembly', The Guardian 16/9/2019
[6] 'Bega times 'Bartymite' branding stroke to perfection', SMH 4/11/2019

Harvard citation

Korff, J 2020, Timeline results for , <https://www.creativespirits.info/aboriginalculture/timeline/searchResults?page=47>, retrieved 23 February 2020

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