Item 11.2 - Attachment 1

 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee minutes 23 February 2010








Bruce Gale in the Chair, Dianne Astill, Councillor Paul Barber (arrived 6.19 pm), Phillip Bradley, Marcia Donovan, Shalini Kumari (retired 8.21 pm), Lyn Leerson, Linda McDonald, Phil Russo, Gilson Saunders and David Williams.






Harry Allie – Indigenous Co-ordination Centre, Robin Bradfield – Convenor, Grant Davies – Minute Clerk, Shanene Hogg (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Project Officer – retired 6.58 pm), Debbie Killian – Manager Community, Library and Social Services, Maggie Kyle - Community Capacity Building Officer and Yvonne Webb (Housing NSW)








Bruce Gale made a Welcome to Country, recognising that the land upon which the meeting was being held is Dharug and paying respect to Elders past and present.




Robin Bradfield from Axis People Development welcomed all to the meeting and introduced himself as the facilitator.


Each member then introduced themselves and provided a brief background on their interests.


In particular, the Committee welcomed Yvonne Webb, ATSI Senior Client Service Officer Specialist for the Mid Western Sydney Area (Housing NSW). Ms Webb can be contacted on 9891 8195.


Ms Webb provided a brief background on her position and welcomed contact from members, either through her direct line or by contacting the Access and Demand Team.




An apology was received and accepted for the absence of Doug Desjardines, Councillor G Elmore, Councillor M Lack, Annie Nielsen, John Robertson, Tony Scholes, Anne Stonham and from representatives of the Blacktown, Fairfield and Liverpool Aboriginal and Torres Strait Advisory Committees.


Resignation of Anne and Murray Castles


Mr Gale read (and tabled) correspondence from Anne and Murray Castles submitting their resignation from the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee and thanking members for their assistance, particularly in relation to the plaque at Lake Parramatta in memory of Peter Castles.




There were no conflicts of interest at this meeting.




The Convenor, Robin Bradfield, provided details on Council’s consideration of 22 February 2010 pertaining to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee Executive Membership. The Council had deferred this decision pending advice from the Committee as to which members the Committee would like to be part of the Executive Team, such membership to not be through genetics but by wisdom and leadership.


The Convenor suggested that members consider this resolution pending further discussion and in the meantime, the offices of Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson remain as is pending the resolution of this issue.


Robin further advised that Council, in considering the Committee’s minutes of 24 November 2009, had not adopted the Committee’s recommendation to seek the introduction of a Conservation Order on Lake Parramatta.


The Council had agreed, however, to seek an urgent WorkCover inspection of the Parramatta Correctional Facility.


A timetable for future meetings of the Committee for 2010 was then distributed to members (copy appended as Attachment 1).




That the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Committee maintain its status quo, with Bruce Gale acting as Chairman and Gilson Saunders acting as Deputy Chair pending resolution of the membership of the Executive Committee.




A copy of the minutes of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee Meeting held on 24 November 2009 had previously been forwarded to each member.


RECOMMENDATION                     (Russo/Saunders)


That the minutes of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee Meeting held on 24 November 2009 be taken as a true record of the meeting with the following alterations:-

1.         The capitalisation of the word “aboriginal” in Item 5.

2.         The word “involvement” pertaining to the Bronze Plaques in Item 9 be changed to “replacement”.

3.         It be noted, in Item 9, that Gilson Saunders will also be involved in the setting up of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Youth Committees.







Bruce Gale advised that no response had been received as yet from Railcorp as to why it would not display posters advertising local events but had displayed posters advertising the Teddy Bears Picnic and was now advertising Leggo and the Chinese New Year.


Maggie Kyle added that Council’s Manager Events also had received no reply to correspondence forwarded on this issue.


RECOMMENDATION         (Russo/Saunders)


That Council forward correspondence to the relevant Minister highlighting the fact that Railcorp will display commercial posters (ie Leggo) but, despite requests spanning over 5 years, and at considerable expense to the Committee, Railcorp will not display posters advertising NAIDOC Week. Accordingly, Railcorp’s support for the future display of such posters is sought.


Parramatta Correctional Facility

Phillip Bradley sought information on the WorkCover inspection of the Parramatta Correctional Facility.


Maggie Kyle advised that a copy of the response received to the Lord Mayor’s correspondence had previously been circulated but noted Council had only yesterday resolved to seek a WorkCover inspection. Arrangements to implement the decision would be made in due course.


Mr Bradley added that he had held discussions with a Senior Education Officer in relation to excessive temperatures in prisons and it was indicated that similar problems were being experienced at Wellington.


Fighting for Lake Parramatta

Bruce Gale asked if any further information was available on this issue.


Maggie indicated that Council had not adopted the Committee’s recommendation to seek the introduction of a Conservation Order on Lake Parramatta.


Councillor Barber added he had voted in accordance with the Committee’s recommendation and that the voting had been tight on this issue.


Maggie further added that Gary Carter would be invited to attend a future meeting and asked if any member could provide a contact.




A copy of the Natural Resource Officer’s Memorandum dated 8 February 2010 regarding the Natural Areas Restoration Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Remediation Works Program for 2010 had previously been circulated to members.


The memorandum noted that funding for the proposed works was only available until June 2010 and as such, projects could only be considered up until the end of February 2010.


Robin Bradfield noted that any member that wished to discuss any of the projects could contact Sally Williams on 9806 5256.


Debbie Killian added that discussions would be held with Ms Williams with a view to further information on the Program being provided to members.


A brief discussion ensued on the survival of the bush tucker garden and whether, the garden, if truly an Aboriginal site, should require maintenance.


Councillor Barber noted that certain proposed works were simply a restoration of the works already in existence at Lake Parramatta, such as the replacement of faded signage.


RECOMMENDATION         (Russo/Donovan)


That projects 8, 9 and 10 relating to Bush Foods Garden 1, Bush Foods Garden 2 and Sorry Day Planting be undertaken as a matter of priority under the Natural Areas Restoration Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Remedial Works Program for 2010.




Shanene Hogg provided details on works recently undertaken in her role as the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Project Officer. Such works included:-

·    An update on the Koori Interagency including advice that the Interagency was now being run by members;

·    Koori swim partnership being undertaken in conjunction with Holroyd City Council at Wentworthville Pool;

·    Discussions being held with Wenty Sports in relation to a Koori Dance Group;

·    The successful Apology Luncheon held on Friday, 19 February at Lake Parramatta;

·    The Aboriginal Employment Strategy is progressing but delays have been experienced due to recent changes in Human Resources Management;

·    Preparation of the Draft Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island Welcome to Country and Acknowledgement of Country Policy. Invitations had been issued to Committee, Interagency and community members to have input into the document. The document is quite generic (copies distributed at meeting and available by contacting Ms Hogg) and its purpose is to assist Council officers when organising a Welcome to Country. It is proposed that an appendix will be attached where relevant community members will be able to nominate themselves as a contact. The document will be reviewed on a regular basis due to changes likely to occur for Councils and Aboriginal communities. Any further input is welcome by emailing


Gilson Saunders expressed his disappointment that the Chair or Deputy Chair of the Committee had not been invited to participate in the recent HMAS Celebration.



Yvonne Webb (6.53 pm) and Shanene Hogg (6.58 pm) retired from the meeting.





Councillor P B Barber spoke in relation to the meeting held with LGAN Executive Members on 4 February 2010. A copy of the notes taken at that meeting is appended as Attachment 2.


Issues discussed and or raised included:-

·    The possibility of the proposed Theme involving older persons. It was subsequently agreed that the Theme be amended to read “Supporting Strong Young Leaders”.

·    Sponsorship be sought from both commercial and governmental sources including Shell, Parramatta Leagues Club, Chamber of Commerce (ie an EOI to its membership database), Department of Education and Workplace Relations, Sydney Water, Land Council (David Williams to undertake in conjunction with Chair and Deputy Chair) and surrounding Councils (David Williams to undertake). It was noted that such sponsorship should be on the basis of “support” rather than a “partnership”, with Parramatta leading the Conference.

Maggie noted that any suggestions for sponsorship would have to be approved by LGAN in the first instance.

·    Epic has been appointed as the conference/event organiser.

·    The University of Western Sydney had offered to provide IT support although this was dependent on the venue utilised as in house IT support may be mandatory.

·    Possible dinner and conference venues including Sebel, Parramatta Riverside Theatres Parramatta Leagues Club and Rosehill Gardens Function Centre. It was considered that the latter suggestion may be too costly and could involve extra transportation costs (although possible usage of The Loop was a consideration). It was agreed that a cost analysis of each possible location be undertaken.

·    Possible attendance numbers. There was an expectation that attendee numbers would increase now that the conference was being held in Parramatta.

·    The need for a variety of workshops with a plenary to enable final outcomes of each workshop to be discussed.

·    The key note speaker should be in line with the Conference theme.

·    Any performers and the Welcome to Country should be by Darug people.

·    David Williams provided relevant details together with maps and suggested that any conference tour should include a trip to the Prospect Hill at the Pemulwuy Estate, an awe inspiring and historically significant site.

·    Future discussions on the LGAN Conference be held at the commencement of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee Meetings and comprise half of the meeting, as previously resolved.



That the conference organisers, Epic, be invited to attend the next meeting of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee.



Shalini Kumari retired from the meeting at 8.21 pm.




Link Up Family Services

Mr Bradley advised that Link Up Family Services were calling for carers for young Aboriginal children. Training will be provided for interested persons. Link Up can be contacted on 9837 2200 or 0407 667 243.


Northern Territory Emergency Response

Phil Russo tabled correspondence received by Ms Julie Owens MP from The Hon Jenny Macklin MP, Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, providing information on the Northern Territory Emergency Response (NTER) income management of welfare recipients and Indigenous housing. A copy of the letter is appended as Attachment 3.


David Williams noted that a delegation was attending the United Nations on this issue.


Domestic Violence Against Kids Campaign

Gilson Saunders advised that he had held discussions with the Parramatta Leagues Club and players Nathan Hindmarsh (and family), Jarryd Hayne and Daniel Mortimer with a view to setting up, in conjunction with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee, a Domestic Violence Against Kids Campaign.


Gilson added that the campaign would consist mainly of a television commercial.


RECOMMENDATION         (Saunders/Russo)


That a letter of support for the Campaign be forwarded to Parramatta Leagues Club on Council letterhead.


Attendance at National Indigenous Education Conference

Linda McDonald advised of her attendance at the subject conference held in Hobart at her own expense despite approaching various organisations for funding, including the Lands Council.


The Conference had proven to be enjoyable with interesting speakers and a pleasant venue. A Conference booklet was available for viewing by interested Members.


Senate Enquiry on Indigenous Education Plan

Phillip Bradley advised that Public Hearings are currently being held around Australia in relation to the Senate Enquiry on the Indigenous Education Plan. He will notify the Committee if any hearings are being held in the local area.


Appointment of Manager Human Resources

Councillor Russo enquired whether Council had appointed a new Manager Human Resources.


Maggie advised that an appointment had been made but unfortunately the incumbent had resigned after 6 weeks due to personal reasons.


 A new Manager had now been appointed and will be invited to attend the April meeting.


Thank You

Harry Allie and David Williams were thanked for their attendance.


Harry invited members to contact him in relation to the Indigenous Program available at his day job at the Indigenous Co-ordination Centre –




The meeting concluded at 8.35 pm.




Next Meeting

Tuesday 20 April 2010

6:00 - 8:00 pm

Meeting Room 1, Council Chambers