Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people stand strong for water, country and climate


RIGHT NOW: Over 100 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are occupying the foyer of Parliament House to fight for the protection of our water, country and climate.

WHEN: Right now, Wednesday 13th February from 11am

WHERE: Parliament House foyer, Canberra

WHAT: 100 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, alongside non-Indigenous allies, are occupying the foyer of Parliament in a colourful, powerful display of unity and strength.

“People have travelled to Canberra from all across the continent to speak out about the destruction of country and water from extractive fossil fuel industries that are fuelling the climate crisis,” Amelia Telford of the Seed Indigenous Youth Climate Network said.

“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are hit first and worst by climate change.  We are hurting in the face of water shortages, extreme heat, environmental pollution and the destruction of country and culture.

“We’re fed up with governments and big business destroying country, threatening precious water and putting the future of our children and younger generations on the line,” Amelia said.

Today’s action comes after 200 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and allies gathered at the Aboriginal Tent Embassy on Tuesday to connect and support one another in the face of extractive industries and corporate greed.

“This action represents a unified Aboriginal community response to the ways our land and water are under attack from resource extraction and climate change. Communities represented here today are at the forefront of fights to stop fracking, protect water in regions like the Murray Darling, and keep coal in the ground,” Philip Winzer of the Warriors of the Aboriginal Resistance said.

Right now, water and our water rights as the original sovereign people of this continent are under greater threat than ever before from irreversible gas fracking and oil drilling, mining, forestry, overfishing, toxic chemical spills, industrial agriculture, cotton farming, and the dangerous climate change that these extractive industries cause.

“Every single government since colonisation has failed to protect country. Our people know best how to care for land and water - and it’s time that our rights, sovereignty and knowledge are respected,” Philip concluded.

The action will feature speakers from affected communities across the continent. Philip, Amelia and speakers are available for interview. A press conference will be held on Parliament Lawns following the action.

For media and interview enquiries contact Kelly on 0422636775.