We wanted to inform you about the recently enacted Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act 2021 in Western Australia. This law aims to protect and manage Aboriginal cultural heritage and came into effect on 1st July 2023.
The Act sets out a number of processes for protecting and managing Aboriginal cultural heritage. These processes include:
- Identifying and assessing Aboriginal cultural heritage: This involves identifying and assessing places, objects, and knowledge and practices that are likely to be of cultural significance to Aboriginal people.
- Consulting with Aboriginal people: The Act requires that Aboriginal people be consulted about any proposed activities that may impact on Aboriginal cultural heritage.
- Obtaining permits: In some cases, a permit is required to undertake an activity that may impact on Aboriginal cultural heritage.
- Conservation and management: The Act provides for the conservation and management of Aboriginal cultural heritage.
As a business operating in Western Australia, it is crucial to familiarise yourself with the provisions of this Act and take any necessary steps to comply with its requirements, ensuring respectful engagement with Aboriginal communities and obtaining the required permits, where necessary.
For further information and guidance on how this Act may or may not affect your business operations, we recommend you to visit Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act 2021 fact sheets, guidelines and exemptions.