Traditional Owner recognition in Victoria
The Victorian Aboriginal community is made up of many groups and individuals who have a range of culturally and legally recognised rights, interests and responsibilities in relation to the management of Country. In Victoria, groups may become formally recognised as Traditional Owners for Country in one or more of the following ways:
- Recognition and Settlement Agreement under the Traditional Owner Settlement Act 2010, which is negotiated with the Victorian Government and provides recognition alongside a land management, procedural and financial package
- Native title determination (or consent determination) under the Native Title Act 1993, which is determined by the federal court provides a bundle of property and access rights.
- Registered Aboriginal Party under the Aboriginal Heritage Act 2006, appointed by the Victorian Aboriginal Heritage Council and providing rights and responsibilities for managing Aboriginal cultural heritage within their appointed area.
Parks Victoria has no role in determining Traditional Ownership. We partner with Traditional Owners according to the rights conferred through these formal processes. In areas where there is no formal recognition, we work inclusively with all Traditional Owners who have expressed an interest in that Country.
Parks Victoria currently partners with eleven Traditional Owner corporations with formal recognition in Victoria:
- Barengi Gadjin Land Council Aboriginal Corporation
- Bunurong Land Council Aboriginal Corporation
- Dja Dja Wurrung Clans Aboriginal Corporation
- Eastern Maar Aboriginal Corporation
- First People of the Millewa-Mallee Aboriginal Corporation
- Gunaikurnai Land and Waters Aboriginal Corporation
- Gunditj Mirring Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation
- Taungurung Land and Waters Council Aboriginal Corporation
- Watharung (Wadawurrung) Aboriginal Corporation
- Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung Cultural Heritage Aboriginal Corporation
- Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation
Visit the Aboriginal Victoria website to find out more about formal recognition in Victoria.
Visit the Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action (DEECA) or Department of Justice and Community Safety (DJCS) websites to find out more about current agreements with Traditional Owners.
To identify whether there is a Registered Aboriginal Party in a particular location, you can look on the Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Register and Information System welcome map.