Regional opportunities for Aboriginal Fishing Advisory Council

The NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) has today announced an Expression of Interest (EOI) process to fill 10 regional membership positions on the NSW Aboriginal Fishing Advisory Council (AFAC).

The positions, which will become vacant in June 2018, cover the Far Western, North West, Central, South Western, Northern, Far North Coast, North Coast, Sydney & Central Coast, South Coast and Far South Coast regions of the state.

DPI Director Fisheries Operations Mika Malkki said the AFAC is the Minister for Primary Industries’ peak advisory group related to Aboriginal peoples’ fishing related interests, providing independent strategic advice on the fishing needs and aspirations of the Aboriginal community.

“It also plays an important role in advising how the broader management measures across sectors stand to impact on Aboriginal peoples’ interests, as well as guidance over funding cultural fishing related projects and business opportunities,” he said.

The EOI process is hoping to attract members with diverse knowledge and experience to address the varied matters that will need focus. This includes cultural fishing access, and the social and cultural significance of commercial fishing for Aboriginal people.

“The AFAC members also need knowledge of and have capacity to speak from the local region perspective on fisheries related issues,” Mr Malkki said.

“The regional representation ensures inland and coastal issues are considered across all fisheries related interest areas, whether wild harvest, aquaculture, or associated fields.”

Mr Malkki thanked current AFAC members for their service, who have helped progress several initiatives for the Aboriginal fishing community, including the establishment of the Aboriginal Fishing Trust Fund.

“The council has also had a major focus developing cultural fishing access, with the current trial of a local management plan approach for accessing resources helped through the input of members,” he said.

“It plays an important role in the development of fishing policy associated to the Aboriginal community, and I’d like to see past and current work built on through members that have the desire to see positive outcomes for both their communities and all users of our fisheries resources.”

Aboriginal persons interested in membership on the council should contact the NSW Department of Primary Industries on (02) 9741 4769 or for further information including a regional boundary map and an application pack.

Expressions of interest must be received by 5pm on Tuesday 1 May 2018.

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