Warning. This article may contain the names and images of Aboriginal and Islander people now deceased. It also contains links to sites that may use images of Aboriginal and Islander people now deceased.
Tracing the history of citizenship and NAIDOC Week
Tracing the history of citizenship has been inextricably linked with government policy and practice as well as Aboriginal activism.
NAIDOC originally stood for 'National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee' after a Day of Mourning was held on Australia Day, 1938. The Day of Mourning was declared due to the lack of response from the Commonwealth government to a petition from Aboriginal people in 1935 and 1937 seeking representation in the Parliament and the establishment of a national department of native affairs and state advisory councils.
Man [magazine], Day of Mourning and Protest Conference at Australian Hall on 26 January 1938. The organisation leaders William Ferguson is on the far left and John Patten is on the far right. Courtesy of Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales.
The first Day of Mourning, was held at the Cyprus Hellene Club in the Australian Hall. It was the first time that Aboriginal people from around Australia joined together to campaign for equality and citizenship rights. The Cyprus Hellene Club-Australian Hall was added to the National Heritage List in 2008.
From 1940 until 1955, the Sunday before Australia Day was the Day of Mourning, now known as Aborigines Day and is part of the ongoing history of NAIDOC.
In 1955 the day was shifted to the first Sunday in July and was promoted as a celebration of Indigenous culture. In 1957 National Aborigines Day Observance Committee (NADOC) formed and the second Sunday in July became a day of remembrance for Aboriginal people and their heritage. In 1991 NADOC became NAIDOC (National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee) to recognise Torres Strait Islanders and to describe a whole week of recognition, rather than one day.
Today NAIDOC celebrations are held around Australia in July by all Australians to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. NAIDOC Awards are held as part of the week's celebrations.
Events are held from the Art Gallery of New South Wales, across Victoria, South Australia, Perth, throughout the Northern Territory and in Queensland as well as the ACT with the regular NAIDOC on the Peninsula.
Listen, look and play
- Listen to K Fletcher, Sorry Song (1998)
- From Little Things Big Things Grow
- Watch clips from films about Indigenous Australia - Australian Screen
- Rabbit Proof Fence - A resource guide
- Watch Kevin Rudd deliver the Apology to Australia's Indigenous peoples
- Listen to the Prime Minister's apology
- Frances Ryan, former resident of the Cootamundra Girls Home, tells her life story to Awaye!, ABC
- ABC, National Apology Day website includes videos and sound recordings
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations
- Indigenous Law Centre - University of New South Wales
- National Native Title Tribunal
- Reconciliation Australia
- Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies
- Australians for Native Title and Reconciliation
- Aboriginal Studies WWW Virtual Library
- The Office of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health (OATSIH)
- National NAIDOC Week
- Weaving the Threads: progress towards reconciliation
Report to Parliament covering the second term of the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation
- Bringing them Home report
- Bringing them Home oral history project - National Library of Australia
- Stories of the Dreaming
- Bringing them Home name index - National Archives of Australia
- Finding Your Story - A resource manual to the records of the Stolen Generations in Victoria
- Stolen Generations Alliance
- Frontier Education, An explanation of Aboriginal History - Australian Broadcasting Corporation
- The Coniston massacre
Last updated: 31 October 2014