28 June 2004
Hobart will host the first of eight national consultation workshops tomorrow (29 June) under the Australian Government’s National Indigenous Forestry Strategy (NIFS).
The Chair of the NIFS Steering Committee, Mike Macnamara, said the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF) was developing the strategy with assistance from other Government agencies to boost the involvement of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in forestry.
“In 2003, we asked BDO Consulting to examine the opportunities for greater Indigenous involvement in Australia’s forest industries,” Mr Macnamara said.
“We also asked BDO to look at the barriers preventing Indigenous Australians from becoming involved in forestry.
“BDO’s report was the basis for the draft NIFS Strategy.
“The workshop series is the second phase of consultations. It will allow us to present the strategy to the Indigenous communities that have provided valuable input into its development.”
Mr Macnamara said the workshops would give Indigenous communities the opportunity to discuss the direction of the proposed strategy and ensure it met the needs they outlined during the initial consultations.
“These follow-up consultations will help us develop a strategy that delivers practical, long-term benefits to all parties and can demonstrate tangible, on-the-ground results,” he said.
“We will hold the other seven workshops in timber communities in South Australia, Victoria, Queensland, Western Australia, the Northern Territory and NSW.”
Background information on the NIFS is available on the DAFF web site www.daff.gov.au/nifs.
Hobart workshop details:
When: 10am, Tuesday, 29 June
Where: The Aboriginal Education Department, Level 2, 99 Bathurst Street, Hobart
For more information on the workshop, contact Janice Ross on (03) 6211 3929.Media contact: Mike Macnamara
DAFF Media +61 2 6272 3232