10.1 C
Byron Shire
April 13, 2021

Entsch slams NT govt for dugong on menu

Latest News

My own pandemic imaginations

Robert Podhajsky, Ocean Shores Imagination is a powerful mechanism; I must admit I get unsettled with my own pandemic imaginations...

Other News

Can you help this local family find a home?

A local couple whose much-loved baby boy was taken away by government officers and then returned is asking the community for help in finding space on a property to park their mobile home.

Council crews working hard to repair potholes

Tweed Shire Council road maintenance crews are out across the Tweed's road network repairing potholes and other damage caused by the recent prolonged rainfall and previous flood events.

Local photographer finalist in National Portrait Prize

Lismore-based photographer R J Poole is one of eighty finalists from over 3,000 entries in this year's Living Memory: National Photographic Portrait Prize.

Lilac house bound by red tape

Mullumbimby resident Nicole Haberecht is facing a $3,000 fine and the prospect of repainting her house after Council made a demand that she change the colour after it was painted a shade of lilac.

Cartoon of the week – 7 April, 2021

We love to receive letters, but not every letter will be published; the publication of letters is at the discretion of the online and print letters editors.

NSW coal power stations still emitting dangerous levels of air pollution

New National Pollutant Inventory data shows that toxic air emissions from the state’s coal-fired power stations fell 15% in the year to June 2020, but they are still among the most polluting industrial facilities in NSW.

A dugong at Sydney Aquarium, which was definitely not on the menu. (file pic)
A dugong at Sydney Aquarium, which was definitely not on the menu. (file pic)

Australia cannot condemn the Japanese for whaling as long as it permits the commercial consumption of dugong and turtle meat, says Queensland MP Warren Entsch who has lashed out at the NT government for listing the vulnerable species on a NAIDOC lunch menu.

The NT government’s Department of Corporate and Information Services’ (DCIS) Social Club’s first NAIDOC lunch is due to take place in Darwin on Thursday, and an email invitation said that for a gold coin donation lunch would feature ‘a delicious range of traditional home-cooked dishes including kangaroo satays, chilli crab, barramundi, curry goose, coconut curry chicken, dugong, turtle, chicken vermicelli and blutchung pork’.

But federal Liberal MP Mr Entsch, the member for Leichhardt in far-north Queensland, said dugong and turtle should only be consumed in the name of traditional cultural practices, and only at the site it was taken.

‘It should not be vacuum-packed and sent around the country so that people can have a taste, and it certainly should not be exchanged for a gold coin donation; these are vulnerable species, not commercial species,’ Mr Entsch said in a statement on Wednesday.

It was ‘appalling’ the event was being organised by a government department, and traditional owners would be ‘highly offended’, he said.

‘Part of the taking of these animals for cultural and traditional purposes is about affording these creatures a level of respect; clearly this is not evident when the meat is packaged and posted to all corners of Australia.’

Transporting turtle and dugong meat from where the animals were taken is against the spirit and intent of traditional hunting, Mr Entsch said, and he is calling on the Federal Environment Minister to immediately ban the take of the species unless it is for traditional and cultural purposes.

‘How can we stand in an international court and argue against the taking of whales by the Japanese, yet sit back and condone the exploitation and obvious commercial use of vulnerable species such as turtle and dugong?’ he said.

‘It’s total hypocrisy and cannot be allowed to continue.’

Section 211 of the Native Title Act permits indigenous people to hunt protected species such as dugongs and turtles for ‘personal, domestic or non-commercial communal needs’.

Mr Entsch has called on the NT government to prevent the meat being served at Thursday’s lunch.

Later, the department’s CEO Kathleen Robinson said the items were removed from the menu, and the lunch had been postponed as staff were uncomfortable with the attention the event had drawn.

‘The DCIS NAIDOC lunch was organised by a volunteer committee of Indigenous staff members to showcase their culture to other staff with a lunch menu of traditional bush tucker,’ she said in a statement.

‘Unfortunately, the menu had included foods that were not suitable for the event and these items were subsequently removed.’

The DCIS has apologised for any offence caused.

‘The volunteer group worked hard to prepare for this event and their efforts and good intentions are appreciated,’ Ms Robinson said.


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Inspector condemns prisoner health services

In the forward to the Inspector of Custodial Services Report published last month, Fiona Rafter Inspector of Custodial Services says that the provision of health services to inmates in New South Wales custodial facilities is a complex and challenging responsibility.

The importance of talking about ovaries

Brother and sister clothing designers Camilla Freeman-Topper and Marc Freeman are, were 11 and 13 respectively when their mother died of ovarian cancer.

Dead rats in the Byron bubble?

Poppa Veet Mayo, Main Arm Am I the only one who can smell a dead rat in this bubble called the Byron Shire? Hear it happened...

Linen SHIFT project urgently needs new home

With a vision to disrupt the cycle of women’s homelessness, the Linen SHIFT project was born to provide unique individual support and education for at-risk women in a safe residential environment, but today they they have been forced to close.