The AJN is proud to support NAIDOC Week, the annual recognition of the National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee, celebrating the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
This year’s theme, “Get up! Stand up! Show up!” encourages systemic change in relations between the Indigenous community and the wider Australian community. For Jews, NAIDOC Week is a reminder of the close and growing ties between the Indigenous community and the Jewish community.
In Victoria, NAIDOC Week is being celebrated through Walk Together, a project under the Jewish Community Council of Victoria (JCCV) First Nations Reconciliation Program, designed to increase Jewish understanding and support for Aboriginal self-determination and empowerment.
We emphatically endorse the JCCV’s observation that Jewish and First Nations peoples have shared experiences of dispossession, genocide, and strong relationships with their respective lands. In light of the federal government’s commitment to implementing the Uluru Statement from the Heart, and the Victorian government’s establishment of the Yoo-rrook Commission, the stage is set for mutual exchange, dialogue and development.
In 2021, the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies pioneered the Beit Sefer Yalbalinga First Nations–Jewish learning course and was due to mark NAIDOC week with an event on Thursday.
Executive Council of Australian Jewry president Jillian Segal was one of nine faith leaders to sign the Joint Resolution on the Uluru Statement – on its fifth anniversary – at a ceremony in May.
The resolution calls on political leaders to take immediate bipartisan action to hold a referendum on a First Nations voice to Parliament.
We echo Segal’s statement that, “We are privileged to live in an era when the long, peaceful and dignified quest for justice by First Nations Australians may at last be realised.”
We look forward to a bright future for our First Nations Peoples, and one in which our own community can make a positive difference and our peoples can learn from one another.