I realise how long it’s been since I’ve posted. The past couple of months have been a blur of university study and casual jobs, all part of the bigger picture – to eventually work overseas as a Social Worker. But the more I learn the facts about the issues that have always riled me up, the more I realise there is a lot to be done closer to home as well.
Not that I am proud to say it, but like the majority of Aussies, my understanding of Indigenous Australians has always been shady. We were never taught about their history or culture at school and I grew up in an area seemingly devoid of Aboriginal culture and people.
Now with years of study ahead of me, a lot of which is based around supporting Indigenous Australians, I am realising how even with the huge disadvantages that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people face, that they possess a deep commitment to respect – to each other, their traditional ways and Country.
I now also realise that the area in which we live is home to the majority of urban Aboriginal communities in Australia. So not only is it important to understand, but it is easier to connect and support.
On May 1 Indigenous communities from all around Australia rallied together to stand up against the Government. With support from the broader Australian public and international groups. SOS Black Australia sent a strong message that the forced closure of remote communities in Western Australia will not be tolerated. Some of the biggest protests were seen in Melbourne and Sydney but lots of rural communities marched in solidarity as well.
While we seem to be going backwards politically at the moment, especially in regards to Indigenous issues, it was so good to see so many different people standing strong together in Brisbane – shouting out for what we want. Let’s just hope the Government is listening!