Cultural Heritage Protection


The National Native Title Council (NNTC) is working with First Nations Peoples, government and industry stakeholders to strengthen Indigenous cultural heritage protection.

Current cultural heritage legislation across Australia is focused on the regulation of destruction rather than empowering first nations people to self-determine how their own heritage is managed.

The NNTC Advocates for:

    • First Nations Peoples right to make decisions about their own heritage
    • First Nations Peoples right to Free, Prior and Informed Consent
    • Industry agreement-making practices must meet international standards and adhere to the principles outlines in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP)


The First Nations Heritage Protection Alliance (The Alliance) is a coalition of First Nations groups from across Australia.

We work to strengthen cultural heritage laws and to create industry reforms to ensure Indigenous cultural heritage is valued and protected for the future.

The Alliance is focused on:

    • Working with the Commonwealth and State Governments on Indigenous cultural heritage protections across legislation and policy.
    • Seek to strengthen and modernise the laws and protections and put Indigenous people at the centre of decision making.

The Dhawura Ngilan Business and Investor Initiative is an Indigenous-led project that aims to inspire the Australian private sector to achieve best practice in the field of First Nations cultural
heritage protection. Dhawura Ngilan (Remembering Country) is a broad vision and set of standards which were released in 2020.

The Alliance-led initiative is a partnership with UN Global Compact Network Australia and Responsible Investment Association Australasia which works with investors and businesses to leverage support from the private sector for legislative reform.


The Alliance advocates for better protection of Indigenous cultural heritage both in Australia and internationally. This includes:

    • Holding the current government to account on their public commitment to introduce new stand-alone cultural heritage protection work.
    • Supporting member cultural heritage protection work.
    • Working in solidarity with First Nations groups globally to share best practice and hold multinational businesses to account.

If you would like to know more about the NNTC’s work in Cultural Heritage or are interested in joining The Alliance, please contact Tom Widdup, Executive Officer – Cultural Heritage at E: