Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Due Diligence

While the WA Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act is being amended, JYAC will continue to negotiate, implement and monitor agreements for care of, access to, and use of Martu native title lands and waters.

Cultural heritage – for Martu and all people – may be tangible or intangible.

This is recognised in the Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act.

For Martu, intangible means, for example, that if a person goes into or near a place without Martu authority or permission according to Martu law,  that could be dangerous for them and Martu people – and constitute a significant disturbance of Martu cultural heritage under Martu law and State law.

Martu cultural heritage is often not recorded on Government registers.  Martu sometimes keep secret the knowledge of a place or the reasons why a place or landscape is important.  This is one way Martu protect important places on their ngurra (country).

A Martu decision to keep a place or landscape secret or to not register that as a Protected Place cannot be interpreted or used to determine the cultural significance of a specific location or a broad landscape.

Only through consultation with the Martu land council (JYAC) can a person seeking to come onto Martu ngurra be assured that they are complying with the State law and Martu law.