The South West Aboriginal Land and Sea Council is the native title representative body of the Noongar people, who are the traditional owners of the south west of Australia. SWALSC works with members to progress resolution of the Noongar native title claims, while also advancing and strengthening Noongar culture, language, heritage and society.
For the past 5 years the Noongar Negotiation Team and SWALSC have been working together to secure a negotiated settlement of all Noongar Native Title claims. These negotiations were completed in late 2014. Between January and March 2015, SWALSC convened 6 Authorisation meetings attended by more than 1500 Noongar people. All 6 claim groups voted to accept the negotiated settlement contained in Indigenous Land Use Agreements (ILUAs). Australia’s biggest native title Settlement can now go ahead.
Before the Agreements can be implemented however, it will take some time to finalise legal processes related to full and final settlement of the 6 native title claims. The Agreements will be executed (signed off) by all parties between April and June 2015. Following this, people will have 3 months to lodge objections to the process with the National Native Title Tribunal. The NNTT will then take some time to investigate and resolve any objections.
It is hoped that these legal issues can be finalised in time for the ILUAs to become operational around July 1 2016.
Between now and then, SWALSC will be facilitating a series of meetings with each Agreement Group. Under the terms of the ILUAs, each Agreement Group (not SWALSC) now needs to decide on a range of matters, including the name and location of Regional Corporations, adoption of Rule Books, and developing key policies, including a cultural advice policy.
Following the successful Authorisation of all six Agreements, SWALSC is optimistic about the future for the Noongar Nation. A range of opportunities will now arise out of Australia’s most significant native tile settlement. The success of the settlement now depends on the Noongar people. If you think you have something to offer, please contact us outlining your skills and experience.