A range of new voices for remote and discrete communities across the state have been confirmed, with the finalisation of mayoral results for 20 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities in Queensland now complete.
Local government election results across the state include 14 new mayors elected to remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander councils.
Deputy Premier, Treasurer and Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships Jackie Trad said the official appointments would provide additional stability for communities as all levels of government rally together in response to coronavirus (COVID-19).
“On behalf of the Palaszczuk Government, I thank all outgoing mayors and councillors for their service and commitment to their communities – particularly over the past few months,” Ms Trad said.
“I would also like to welcome all new and returning mayors and councillors as we work together towards local thriving communities and keeping Queenslanders safe from COVID-19.
“Local government representatives including mayors and councillors play an important role as respected local voices to build on leadership and progress already made in their communities.
“As we face the unprecedented challenges that the COVID-19 outbreak has presented to all Queensland communities that leadership is more important than ever.
“The Queensland Government remains committed to acknowledging and embracing local leadership as it reframes the relationship with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to deliver strong, community-focused outcomes.
Ms Trad said the Queensland Government would continue to liaise and work in partnership with elected representatives to keep health, education, employment and business outcomes moving in remote communities.
“The Queensland Government is in regular contact with remote and discrete communities including through regular teleconferences and a network of dedicated community liaison officers,” she said.
“The Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships has assigned liaison officers to remote and discrete communities and other communities with large populations of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people including Bundaberg, Cairns, Townsville, Gladstone, Hervey Bay, Mt Isa, Burketown, and Rockhampton so that emerging issues can be resolved promptly.
“Minimising the spread of COVID-19 means we are still working together, just differently, to enable local thriving communities across Queensland.
“This is an opportunity to work together in new, innovative and different ways tailored to meet the needs of remote and discrete communities in Queensland,” she said.