Historic new appointment at Queensland State Archives

Published Friday, 09 July, 2021 at 02:35 PM

Minister for Communities and Housing, Minister for Digital Economy and Minister for the Arts
The Honourable Leeanne Enoch

In a historical move for the state, Queensland State Archives has announced the appointment of its inaugural First Nations Archives Advisor.

Minister for Digital Economy Leeanne Enoch congratulated Butchulla woman Rose Barrowcliffe on securing the role, and said it was a fitting announcement for NAIDOC week.

“This year’s theme for NAIDOC week is ‘Heal Country’ and that is exactly what this appointment is aiming to do- ensuring our state’s archives have an accurate representation of First Nations voices and history,” Minister Enoch said.

“Ms Barrowcliffe is the perfect candidate for this role, currently undertaking research at the University of the Sunshine Coast on the representation of Indigenous peoples in archives and historical narratives.

“Many aspects of First Nations perspectives have been absent in historical government records, leaving us with a narrative that does not include those important voices.

“Queensland State Archives holds the evidence of our uncomfortable shared past and has a crucial role to play in supporting the Path to Treaty’s commitment to truth telling.

“It is our duty to not shy away from these truths, but to hear and learn from them, so we can continue on the path towards healing,” Ms Enoch said.

Newly appointed First Nations Archives Advisor Rose Barrowcliffe said she is excited by the challenge and opportunities of her appointment.

“I’m really excited about the initiative that Queensland State Archives and the Queensland Government have taken with redressing the representation of Indigenous people in our historical narrative and I’m honoured to be asked to be a part of that,” Ms Barrowcliffe said.

“The role at Queensland State Archives closely aligns with my doctoral research which examines the ways representation of Indigenous peoples in archives can impact historical narratives.

“Truth-telling is a crucial step to moving Queensland forward in a way that respects Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders as its First Peoples, and archives need to play a key part in that process.

“It is always a challenge to be asked to be a representative of such a large and diverse group of people.

“This is something I will be mindful of as the First Nations Archives Advisor, that the different lived experiences, perspectives and needs need to be brought forward and respected.”

Queensland state archives also established the role to respond to the Tandanya-Adelaide Declaration which challenges archives around the world to include the experiences and perspectives of First Nations people in their collections.

Find out more about Queensland State Archives at https://www.qld.gov.au/recreation/arts/heritage/archives


Media contact: Bridget Druery 0437 859 987