Dylan Clarke, Reserved Seat holder for Barengi Gadjin Land Council
Dylan Clarke has great faith in Aboriginal people to make Treaty work.
“We have survived and thrived in all kinds of environments and continue to fight for our rights and our place in society,” he explains.
Mr Clarke says to make the most of the current opportunity, Community will have to work together.
“We cannot do a good job without our mob walking with us and guiding us on each and every step we take,” he says.
“We are accountable to our communities and this is why it’s important we hear your views and aspirations for the future. This isn’t about us in the present, we need to be prepared for the next generation.”
A reserved seat holder representing the Barengi Gadjin Land Council, Mr Clarke says the Assembly has seen enormous progress.
“The first term has been incredible. From the first meeting there has been a lot of movement and the Assembly is progressing towards establishing itself as a strong entity for Aboriginal People,” he said.
“I have been impressed with the feedback from the community and believe this is helping shape how information is shared and managed from the Assembly outward. While there is much more work to do, I think the steps taken to establish a framework are crucial to the success of future Treaties in Victoria.
“I feel it is important to develop a framework under the right circumstances, this means calling out systematic failures and other areas that have impacted our people immensely. Truth and Justice is an essential step for this work.”
Mr Clarke says that truth (through the Yoo-rrook Justice Commission) will be difficult for many in all corners of the Victorian community, including the non-Aboriginal community, but says it’s a vital next step in the state’s story.
“We have a prime opportunity to work together and rebuild a solid foundation towards a brand new future in Victoria,” he suggests.
“What we are doing is not easy and will provoke some uneasy feelings because the truth is hard to hear from both sides. We are not blaming anyone for the past, but it’s a fact, we are all responsible for the present and we must do this together to heal and grow as equals. Listen deeply and allow yourself to communicate from the heart with compassion and sincerity.”