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Co-operation, not compulsory acquisition for the Kimberley

Media Release
Rachel Siewert 14 Oct 2010

Australian Greens Aboriginal Issues spokesperson Senator Rachel Siewert has used a visit to the Kimberley to call for a more respectful approach to development in the region, as the WA Government continues moves to compulsory acquire land for a new gas hub.

Senator Siewert was in the Kimberley accompanied by fellow WA Senator Scott Ludlam and Greens Leader Bob Brown for a series of meetings and a visit to James Price Point.

“It is essential to get the management of the Kimberly right into the future, rather than continuing this path of exploitation at any cost,” Senator Siewert said in Broome today.

“We’ve been speaking to traditional owners and stakeholders about the need to take a collaborative approach to planning and development.

“The old approach, which exploits the land and its people, is not an acceptable way to operate. We need to be more aware of the management needs of this area’s cultural heritage and value.

“Compulsory land acquisition is not acceptable and is a step backwards from meaningful reconciliation.

“Ongoing development in the Kimberley requires cooperation between stakeholders, the community and this land’s traditional owners.

“We need to take a better approach that develops community agreement on the nature of any development identifies the most important places to protect.

“The way forward is one which does not prioritise development ahead of human rights, but rather one which respects the cultural and heritage value of this region and secures a positive future for all parties,” concluded Senator Siewert.

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