Acknowledgement of Country
“In opening this [name of meeting] we acknowledge that we stand on the lands of the (name of the group) people, and thank their Elders for continued custodianship of the land and their culture.”
“In opening this [name of meeting] we acknowledge that we stand on the lands of the (name of the group) people, and thank their Elders for continued custodianship of the land and their culture, for they hold the memories, the traditions, the culture and hopes of First Nations Australia. We must always remember that under the concrete and asphalt, the land, sea, and waterways were, and always will be, First Nations land.”
Our vision for reconciliation is for a society that respects, protects and promotes the rights of all, and in which First Nations peoples and other Australians live and work together with mutual respect and understanding, free from discrimination and harassment.
As the union for Queensland public school and TAFE teachers and school leaders, we recognise the unique role our schools and educational institutions have in achieving this vision.
Why do we do it?
The QTU expects all of its branches and committees to acknowledge Country and the Traditional Owners of the land. Usually, this acknowledgement will be delivered by the most senior member of the organisation present – it does not have to be a First Nations person.
The acknowledgement recognises the unique position of First Nations peoples in Australian culture, history, and as the original owners of the land. This position, in which other Australians walk alongside First Nations peoples, is incorporated in official protocol to enable the wider community to share First Nations cultures and build better relationships with First Nations peoples.
In the QTU
Gandu Jarjum is the QTU’s committee for First Nations members. It reviews relevant QTU policies and provides feedback and suggestions, and advocates for First Nations members and students.
There is a designated position on QTU Executive, and First Nations members are prioritised on QTU committees.
The QTU was one of the first education unions to develop a Reconciliation Action Plan. The QTU’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Educators Network gives members information on Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander education and current issues.