Minister for Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services
The Honourable Tracy Davis
Indigenous Youth Parliament renamed
Queensland’s Indigenous Youth Parliament has been renamed the Eric Deeral Indigenous Youth Parliament, in honour of the state’s first Indigenous Member of Parliament.
Minister for Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services, Tracy Davis, said it was an appropriate honour for Mr Deeral whose achievements continue to be an inspiration for many.
“Eric Deeral has passionately served the Aboriginal community, his local electorate and the wider public and he is a wonderful role model to young Indigenous people,” Ms Davis said.
“I am delighted that he will be present to see the parliament in action and will be able to share some words of wisdom with the aspiring young people at the event.”
Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of Queensland, Fiona Simpson sought permission from Mr Deeral to rename the Indigenous Youth Parliament, at an Acknowledgement event in Hope Vale yesterday.
The event was held on Mr Deeral’s land and was attended by his family and community.
The annual Indigenous Youth Parliament will take place on June 28, which Mr Deeral will attend to speak with the participants.
“The Eric Deeral Indigenous Youth Parliament will see 40 young Indigenous leaders come together to explore the workings of democracy and have some real, robust debate on issues facing young people today,” Ms Davis said.
The event will form part of the week-long Indigenous Youth Leadership Program, which is run in partnership between the Department of Communities’ Office for Youth, Xstrata Coal and the Queensland Parliament.
Eric Deeral represented the seat of Cook from 1974 to 1977 and was the first Aboriginal person to be elected to an Australian state parliament. He went on to work closely with the community and was the first chairperson of the Aboriginal Coordination Council.