Community engagement


Aboriginal Lands Act 1970 (Vic)

The Aboriginal Lands Act 1970 (Act) was the then government’s response to the Victorian Aboriginal community's struggle for land. The Act granted freehold title over the remaining two Victorian mission sites, Framlingham and Lake Tyers to its residents through the Framlingham and Lake Tyers Aboriginal Trusts (Trusts). People living at Framlingham and Lake Tyers on a day specified in the Act were gazetted as members of either the Framlingham or Lake Tyers Aboriginal Trusts and subsequently allocated shares. The Minister for Aboriginal Affairs and Aboriginal Victoria are responsible for the administration of the Act.

The Review of the Aboriginal Lands Act 1970 (Vic)

The main purpose of this Review is to achieve improved governance and to enable greater self-determination by the Aboriginal owners of the Lake Tyers and Framlingham Aboriginal communities.

Why is the Act having a review?

It is usual government practice to periodically review legislation. The Act is now over forty years old. Although the Act has had several amendments, it appears the Act is not best placed to take the communities into future generations, and it has not kept pace with current laws, changes in attitudes and policy governing Aboriginal affairs in Victoria.

What is the Review about?

In 2017, the Victorian Government published a Discussion Paper outlining its intention to undertake a major review of the Act. The Victorian Government hopes that the outcomes of this Review will help the Trusts’ governance, progress Aboriginal self-determination, and improve economic development for the Trust communities.

This includes examining whether the Act should remain its current form or whether there are better ways of ensuring that the aspirations of shareholders and residents of the two communities can be met.

What has the Review achieved so far?

The Review is being carried out by independent reviewers, Jason Behrendt and Tim Goodwin, who will make recommendations to the Victorian Government. The reviewers consulted with the Trust communities in 2018, which informed the development of an Options Paper released in 2019. The Options Paper outlines three main options for the Act:

  1. No change
  2. Minor change
  3. Major change

For further information on the Review, please download the fact sheets, Options Paper, and Discussion Paper below.

Discussion paper

Review of the Aboriginal Lands Act 1970: Discussion paper Review of the Aboriginal Lands Act 1970: Discussion paperPDF (304.25 KB)

Fact sheets

What is the Aboriginal Lands Act 1970? What is the Aboriginal Lands Act 1970?PDF (1.83 MB)

What is the review of the Aboriginal Lands Act 1970? What is the review of the Aboriginal Lands Act 1970?PDF (1.06 MB)

Options Paper

What does the Options Paper say? What does the Options Paper say?PDF (2.01 MB)

Executive Summary of Options Paper Executive Summary of Options PaperPDF (1.62 MB)

Options Paper - May 2019 Options Paper - May 2019PDF (2.68 MB)

How can I participate in the Review?

Community participation in the Review is important. This is a chance for all Trust residents and shareholders to have a say about the future of their communities. This feedback will guide the Review and its outcomes.

All Trust residents and shareholders are invited to have a say in the review. Community consultation sessions are being held at both Trusts and in surrounding regions. You can have your say by:

  1. Visiting a community lunch. The dates are in the flyers attached below.
  2. Visiting Engage Victoria website and filling out a survey
  3. Emailing your thoughts to 
  4. Calling the reviewers, Jason on 02 9231 4544, or Tim on 03 9225 8444 for a one-on-one phone conversation
  5. Calling Aboriginal Victoria on 03 9651 2913 to arrange a one-on-one conversation in person.

Comments and submissions to the Review will be accepted until 31 July 2019.