Leading Indigenous activist, Professor Patrick Dodson, lectures for Caritas at Notre Dame

Document Type

Media Release

Publication Date

Fall 9-3-2009

Publisher Name

The University of Notre Dame, Sydney Campus

Publication Place



Prominent Indigenous activist, Professor Patrick Dodson, recently gave an inspiring lecture, Indigenous Rights: Beyond Symbolism, at The University of Notre Dame Australia’s Sydney Campus.

Over 250 people came to the University’s Broadway site to hear Professor Dodson. He spoke on how the Australian Government could move ‘beyond symbolism’ to a framework ensuring accountability for Indigenous justice.

“The challenge is that, as a nation we are called to act for the rights of Indigenous people and all Australians. We all have a role to play in pursuit of Indigenous justice that goes beyond saying sorry.

“We now have the opportunity before us to begin our next chapter for the story of our journey to having a national identity that includes full reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians,” said Professor Dodson.

The event was the first in a series of lectures for Caritas Australia. Caritas Australia is the Catholic agency for international aid and development.

Chief Executive Officer of Caritas and Notre Dame Governor, Mr Jack de Groot, also spoke at the event.

“Caritas is deeply honoured to have Professor Dodson present at our inaugural lecture. He has challenged us to think, and given us firm guidance about how we can move beyond symbolism to meaningful dialogue and action for justice for Indigenous Australians and for all of Australia.

"One year on from the ‘Apology’, Australia must take the next step to significant action to challenge the great injustice,” said Mr de Groot.

Professor Dodson is an Aboriginal leader and Yawuru man from Broome, Western Australia.

He is a former Chairman of the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation and former Commissioner into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody.

He is a Professor within the Nulungu Centre for Indigenous Studies at the University’s Broome Campus.

Media contact:

Moira Saunders 02 8204 4407