Group VRG 58
Aboriginal Affairs
About this Group Related Agencies Related Functions
Date Range: 1967 - cont
 
Description of this GroupDescription of this Group
The appointment of a Minister of Aboriginal Affairs in December 1967 reflected the beginning of a new policy direction in Victoria in regard to matters relating to Aborigines.

Amendments to the Commonwealth Constitution in 1967 provided for the Commonwealth Parliament to make laws "for the benefit of the Aboriginal people of Australia". Under the Victorian Aboriginal Affairs (Transfer of Functions) Act of December 1974 (No.8606), the Victorian Aboriginal Affairs Act 1967 (No.7571) was repealed bringing into force the provisions of the Commonwealth Aboriginal Affairs (Arrangements with the States) Act 1973 (No.115). This Act enabled the Commonwealth (VRG 87) to take over primary responsibility for policy and programs relating to Aborigines.

The Premier (VRG 50) took over responsibility at State level. This role was assumed in 1985 by the Minister Responsible for Aboriginal Affairs (who was also Minister of Planning and Environment, VRG 65).

From April 1990 a newly commissioned Minister for Aboriginal Affairs assumed responsibility. Since October 1992 a Minister Responsible for Aboriginal Affairs has been responsible.

Responsibility of Other Ministers

Other Ministers continued to exercise responsibility in relation to the provision of a range of services to the Aboriginal community, for example Education (VRG 35), Health (VRG 39), Housing (VRG 53), Community Welfare Services (VRG 60), and Community Services (VRG 80). Further research is needed on the nature of the responsibilities of these Ministers.

SUMMARY OF ADMINISTRATION OF POLICY AND PROGRAMS FOR ABORIGINES IN VICTORIA 1836-1967

Date Colonial Official/Minister

1836-1839 VRG 7 Police Magistrate, Port Phillip District
1839-1851 VRG 11 Superintendent, Port Phillip District
1851-1855 VRG 16 Colonial Secretary
1855-1856 VRG 26 Chief Secretary
1856-1860 VRG 18 Lands
1860-1966 VRG 26 Chief Secretary
1966-1967 VRG 53 Housing

Location of Records

Few extant records of the agencies with primary responsibility for the function are in the custody of the Public Record Office. The majority of records going back to the 1860's are presumed to have passed to the Commonwealth in 1975 with the function and significant records holdings have subsequently been transferred to Australian Archives in Victoria. Related records may, however, be found amongst those of the Departments in which these agencies were located, e.g. the Colonial Secretary's Office (VA 856) and the Chief Secretary's Department (VA 475). For the earlier period, the records of the Police Magistrate (VA 472) and Superintendent (VA 473) should be consulted, while records relating to education, health, housing and welfare services may be found in those of the agencies with primary responsibility for these functions (see as a starting point VRG 35 Education, VRG 39 Health, VRG 53 Housing, VRG 60 Community Welfare Services, VRG 80 Community Services).

See also List of Holdings 2nd edition 1985, sections 3.16.2 (VA 472 Police Magistrate), 3.16.3 (VA 473 Superintendent), 3.16.4 (VA 856 Colonial Secretary), 3.16.5 (VA 475 Chief Secretary) and 16.5.0. (a small collection of records of Victorian agencies responsible for Aboriginal Affairs).

Ministers
Minister for Aboriginal Affairs 1967-1975
Premier 1975-1985
Minister Responsible for Aboriginal Affairs 1985-1990
Minister for Aboriginal Affairs 1990-1992
Minister Responsible for Aboriginal Affairs 1992-ct

 
Other InformationOther Information
Agencies within this GroupAgencies within this Group
Display entries per page
Date within Group Agency Title Agency Number Agency Hierarchy
1968 - 1975 Ministry for Aboriginal Affairs VA 2873 Dept. of State
1990 - 1990 Victoria Archaeological Survey (previously known as Archaeological and Aboriginal Relics Office 1972-1975) VA 1802 Sub Department
1990 - 1990 Historic Shipwrecks Advisory Committee I VA 4258 Statutory Authority
1992 - 1993 Victoria Archaeological Survey (previously known as Archaeological and Aboriginal Relics Office 1972-1975) VA 1802 Sub Department
1992 - 1993 Historic Shipwrecks Advisory Committee I VA 4258 Statutory Authority
1992 - 1996 Department of Health and Community Services VA 3092 Dept. of State
1996 - 2000 Department of Human Services VA 3970 Dept. of State
2002 - 2007 Department for Victorian Communities VA 4562 Dept. of State
2007 - 2013 Department of Planning and Community Development VA 4838
2013 - cont Department of the Premier and Cabinet VA 1039
Functions related to this GroupFunctions related to this Group
Display entries per page
Date within Group Function Title Function Number
1983 - 1990 Archaeological survey (maritime and historic) VF 183
1983 - 1990 Archaeological survey (aboriginal) VF 326
1992 - 1993 Archaeological survey (maritime and historic) VF 183
1992 - cont Archaeological survey (aboriginal) VF 326