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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for State Development and Minister for Natural Resources and Mines
    The Honourable Dr Anthony Lynham

    Native Title decision “another step on our journey”

    Minister for State Development and Minister for Natural Resources and Mines
    The Honourable Dr Anthony Lynham

    Tuesday, November 28, 2017

    Native Title decision “another step on our journey”

    A native title decision today protects the rights of future generations of the Bailai, Gurang, Gooreng Gooreng and Taribelang Bunda People over land and waters from Bundaberg to Bouldercombe and west to Monto.

    In a special hearing in Gladstone this morning, the Federal Court of Australia will recognise their rights to access, hunt, fish and gather, conduct ceremonies and teach on more than 4000 square kilometres of central Queensland.

    Natural Resources and Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham said today’s decision acknowledged and protected these rights for future generations of Bailai, Gurang, Gooreng Gooreng and Taribelang Bunda People.

    Assistant Minister for Transport and Infrastructure Glenn Butcher said the determination was the culmination of very long and complex process over 20 years.

    “It’s great to see the traditional owners achieve this milestone and have their rights protected,” he said.

    Traditional owner Richard Johnson said today’s native title decision was another step on their journey.

    “Although the recognition of native title won’t change my life, there is potential positive changes for my grandchildren and their children into the future,” Mr Johnson said.

    “Much of the landscape including mountains and rivers and resources such as animals in the sea,  on land and in the air hold special cultural significance.

    “They are the birthplaces of previous generations  and have connection through stories which identify places of interest and previous traditional and historical memories.”

    The area includes 26 national parks, and the Bailai, Gurang, Gooreng Gooreng and Taribelang Bunda People have an Indigenous Land Use Agreement with the Queensland Government to protect the parks.

    “This agreement confirms the Bailai, Gurang, Gooreng Gooreng and Taribelang Bunda People’s commitment to the care of their ancestral lands as they have done for countless generations,” Dr Lynham said.

    “Importantly, the Bailai, Gurang, Gooreng Gooreng and Taribelang Bunda had made another agreement with the government over 13,700 sq km of land adjoining the area determined today.

    “This has potential to provide economic development benefits well into the future from future infrastructure and other major projects.”

    [ENDS]

    Media contact:Jan Martin 0439 341 314