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Juukan Gorge inquiry: Shining a light on Queensland

Issue date: Monday, 17 May 2021

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On Tuesday 18 May, the inquiry into the destruction of Indigenous heritage sites at Juukan Gorge will be examining Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander heritage legislation in Queensland, with a public hearing by videoconference.

The Committee will be hearing from representatives of the Australian Heritage Specialists and the Cape York Land Council.

In their submission to the DATSIP review of Queensland Cultural Heritage Acts the Australian Heritage Specialists comment that the States Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act should strike a balance between protecting cultural heritage and providing government and businesses achievable, clear-cut, and practical processes.

A key concern of the Cape York Land Councils is that Indigenous cultural heritage protection and management decisions associated with development or resource use proposals must no longer be made by politicians or bureaucrats.

Northern Australia Committee Chair Warren Entsch is intent on understanding the issues stakeholders are having in their respective states so that the Committee will be able to produce solutions that will relate to the issues States and Territories are having with their Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Legislation.

Mr Entsch stated that, ‘The Committee is determined to listen to stakeholders from Queensland to comprehend the specific issues they have with the States Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Heritage Legislation, the Committee will endeavor to address these concerns in our report’


A program for the public hearing is available on the Committee’s website.

Public hearing details

Date: Tuesday, 18 May 2021
Time: 10:00 am to 12:00 pm AEST
Location: by video/teleconference

The hearings will be broadcast live at

Further details of the inquiry, including terms of reference, can be found on the Committee’s website.

Media inquiries

Hon Warren Entsch MP, Chair of the Joint Standing Committee on Northern Australia
02 6277 4803

For background information

Committee Secretariat
02 6277 4162

For more information about this Committee, you can visit its website. On the site, you can make a submission to an inquiry, read other submissions and get details for upcoming public hearings. You can also track the Committee and receive email updates by clicking on the blue ‘Track Committee’ button in the bottom right hand corner of the page.

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