The Kimberley Land Council has been extremely successful at securing native title rights for Kimberley Aboriginal people with about 70 per cent of the region determined native title land.
Our success comes from the strength of our mob, Kimberley Aboriginal people, who have been strong campaigners for land rights since our organisation was started in 1978 at Noonkanbah. In 2000, the KLC was recognised as the Native Title Representative Body for the region and we have been working for and with Kimberley Traditional Owners to assist them get native title rights and interests in their country.
Native title can be a long and complex process. Some Indigenous groups in the Kimberley have been fighting for more than 18 years for their land rights to be recognised in Australian Law. There are many groups that are still waiting for their native title rights and interests and we will continue to work with them to get recognition.
The role of Native Title Representative Bodies, like the KLC, is changing as more native title areas are determined and Registered Native Title Bodies Corporate or Prescribed Bodies Corporate are formed as the body responsible for managing a group’s native title rights and interests.
The KLC is working with Traditional Owner groups to navigate the shift in native title, to the post-determination environment where we hope to work with Aboriginal groups to establish corporations and enterprises that will empower Kimberley Indigenous people to take control of their own lives and build strong futures for their children.
The legal and native title units of the KLC operate within regional teams and assist Kimberley native title holders and PBCs through the pre and post determination phases. The regional structure is made up of the Dampier Peninsula, Central Desert and east Kimberley regions and is used to strategically and effectively cover the vast Kimberley region which covers 423,517 sq km.