Lingiari lecture to focus on Indigenous constitutional recognition


Josie Crawshaw

Josie Crawshaw

A life-long campaigner for Indigenous rights and a leading figure in the push for structural reform for First Nations Peoples will deliver the 18th Vincent Lingiari Lecture at Charles Darwin University on 15 August.

Josie Crawshaw, a Gurindji woman and long-time Indigenous rights campaigner and recent co-chair of the Uluru Statement Working Group, will provide insights from two years of taking a leading role in identifying meaningful reforms that recognise First Nations People in Australia’s Constitution.

“We need a comprehensive settlement package that includes financial reparations to re-set the relationship between the Australian Government and first peoples,” Ms Crawshaw said.
“It is time now for our nation to rally and challenge the Prime Minister’s rejection of the Uluru Statement.”

The Lingiari lecture commemorates the historic walk-off from Wave Hill Station in 1966 by Aboriginal stockmen, station workers and their families, which planted the seeds for Aboriginal land rights in Australia.

Ms Crawshaw said that while the walk-off contributed to the movement that resulted in the successful 1967 referendum, ongoing activism has been necessary ever since to maintain pressure on governments to develop policies and improve service delivery.

“Australia’s First Nations Peoples have been compelled to continue campaigning to highlight the inequitable power relationships that have resulted in poor living conditions and breaches of human, civil and political rights,” she said.

At the lecture, Ms Crawshaw also will share the story of Nawurla, her Gurindji mother and the source of her persistence and resilience.

“In 1922, under the Australian Government’s segregation and protection policy, my mother was stolen from her family at age six and brought to the Kahlin Compound at Myilly Point in Darwin,” Ms Crawshaw said.

“My mother’s life has been a constant source of inspiration and has driven me for more than 50 years of activism and advocacy.”

 Ms Crawshaw said that just like in 1967, Australia needed a collective mind shift.
“Australia cannot afford to continue with the fiction that this nation was settled,” she said.

“We need a truth telling process that accepts the reality of invasion. A modern Australia would recognise our rightful place as the first peoples of this country.

“It is a collective responsibility of all Australians to again say ‘Yes’.”
The lecture will be held at 6pm on Wednesday, 15 August at CDU’s Casuarina campus amphitheatre. The lecture is free and open to the public. Please RSVP attendance to E:

For further information visit W:

Contact us

Media and Communications
Casuarina campus
Orange 12.3.20