FATSIL Updates PDF Print E-mail
FATSIL has been busy in the last quarter of 2008 and we are looking forward to building on the goodwill established last year for a productive and successful 2009. We have taken a more proactive approach to lobbying policy makers and have made a concerted effort to consult and include our members and other stakeholders in our major initiatives. Our efforts have been directed toward:
  • an Indigenous Languages Petition that calls on the Federal Government to address the alarming rate of language loss since colonisation. The petition, which was formulated after the Lingfest 2008 conference, now has in excess of 1000 signatures. FATSIL wishes to thank Rob Amery, Patrick McConvell, Greg Wilson, Jeanie Bell, Lester Irabinna Rigney, Melanie Gillbank, Alex Kelly, Adriano Truscott and Kirsten Cheatham for their efforts to develop the petition.
  • a national register for the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI). NAATI is assisting FATSIL to compile a database to make it easier for people to find and access translating and interpreting services. The register, will be located on the FATSIL website, is funded by the Department for Indigenous Affairs and has the personal support of Minister Jenny Macklin. FATSIL wishes to thank Jeanie Bell, Lorna Wilson, Eve Fesl, Heather Glass, Ken Lechleitner and Dagmar Dixon for their input into this program.
  • an Indigenous Language Inquiry through the Federal Government’s House Standing Committee on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs. FATSIL will continue to lobby for an inquiry to look into how Indigenous languages are supported in Australia.
  • a keynote address by Paul Herbert, FATSIL National Manager, at the World Indigenous Peoples Conference: Education (WIPC:E) 2008. Paul spoke about the decline of Indigenous languages and the efforts that FATSIL was making toward engaging government and setting the agenda for positive change.
  • developing the website to be more useful and relevant to our members and others seeking information on Indigenous languages. FATSIL has recently developed a number of new functions including an online shop, a donations page, a link to the ABC Indigenous news service, and regular news section on language related stories.
  • a National Indigenous Languages Association. FATSIL is consulting with language organisations and other stakeholders on the form of a national association. FATSIL is drafting a Heads of Agreement and intends to invite professional organisations to become associate members.
  • a secondee program with the National Australia Bank (NAB) and Indigenous Community Volunteers (ICV). FATSIL is excited by a new partnership with NAB and ICV to work on the development of the Translators and Interpreters Register and an online FATSIL newsletter.