Myall Creek a priority for new Minister

June 1, 2011

This year Mr Victor Dominello, the newly appointed NSW Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, and Minister for Citizenship and Communities, will attend the annual Myall Creek gathering on Saturday 11 June.

Each year upwards of 400 people from across the country gather on the June long weekend to commemorate the unprovoked massacre of twenty-eight Wirrayaraay women, children and old men by a group of stockmen in 1838.

The Myall Creek Memorial on the Bingara-Delungra Road near Inverell, was erected in June 2000 by a group of Aboriginal and non-aboriginal people working together in an act of reconciliation.

In 2008 the massacre site and Memorial received national recognition when it was included on the National Heritage Register. In announcing its inclusion Mr Peter Garrett, then federal Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts, said the Memorial was “a sign of how we continue to grow and mature as a nation.  That we come to terms with our past, acknowledge it, identify it and then move forward together, sharing the future.”

The Memorial also received NSW state heritage listing in 2010.

Guest speaker this year is the noted Indigenous Australian theologian and academic Dr Anne Pattel-Gray.  Anne has been the Executive Secretary of the Aboriginal & Islander Commission of the National Council of Churches in Australia, and a Research Fellow at the University of Sydney.

She has represented Aboriginal Australia on various international bodies and organisations throughout the world. Anne also played a signifiant role in organising the 1988 March for Justice, Freedom and Hope.

Anne’s own journey as an Indigenous person has been one of pain and hope. She believes whether non-Indigenous people are part of the problem or part of the hope will depend on the extent to which they are prepared to travel alongside Indigenous people, listening and offering solidarity.

Plans for an educational and cultural centre to be built near the site are well in hand and will be outlined to those attending.The annual memorial service is open to everyone. Those intending to participate are invited to gather at the Myall Creek Hall by 9.30 am for morning tea. Lunch will be available after the ceremony for a small charge.

.Contacts : Ivan Roberts (02) 6258 8971 or