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South West Native Title SettlementShow more
The South West Native Title Settlement (Settlement) is a long-term investment in the Noongar people and the shared success of Western Australia.
The Settlement, in the form of six Indigenous Land Use Agreements (ILUAs) was negotiated between the Noongar people and the WA Government. The Settlement commenced on 25 February 2021.
On 29 March 2021, the initial Noongar Boodja Trust (NBT) was established to manage and hold all assets from the Settlement, and the first historic payment was made by the WA government to the NBT:
- $50 million to the Future Fund; and
- $10 million to the Operations Fund.
In June 2022 the South West Aboriginal Land and Sea Council was appointed as the Settlement’s Central Services Corporation. Across October and November 2022, six new Noongar Regional Corporations were appointed to represent the ILUA groups.
The Noongar peoples’ strong relationship to their boodja (Noongar land) is reflected through the many components of the Settlement package, including the creation of the Noongar Land Estate and the recognition, in statute, of the Noongar peoples as the Traditional Owners of the south west region.
Learn more about the Noongar groups that form the greater Noongar Nation.
Elements of the Settlement package
The Settlement package provides the Noongar people with sustainable assets and options for developing Noongar interests, including opportunities for the WA Government to work in partnership with the Noongar people to elevate economic, social and community outcomes.
- Noongar Recognition through an Act of Parliament
- Noongar Boodja Trust
- Noongar Land Estate
- Noongar Regional Corporations and Central Services Corporation
- Noongar Land Fund
- Access to Crown Land
- Co-operative and joint management of the Conservation Estate
- Noongar Housing Program
- Economic Participation
- Capital Works Program – Noongar cultural centre and office accommodation
- Community Development
- Noongar Standard Heritage Agreement
- Noongar Heritage Partnership Agreements
Six Indigenous Land Use Agreements and key events
The full details of the Settlement are recorded in six Indigenous Land Use Agreements (ILUAs) made in compliance with the Native Title Act 1993 (NTA).
Read the South West Native Title Settlement News for the latest information about the status of the Settlement, or see the ‘Settlement Commencement Flowchart’, detailing the resolution of native title and the historic first payments into the Noongar Boodja Trust.
For a chronology of the all key events read the South West Native Title Settlement Timeline.
Resolution of native title in the Settlement Area
From 13 April 2021 the native title act ceased to apply over the Settlement area - meaning future act processes no longer occur.
Read about the ‘commencement of the Settlement and resolution of native title’ to understand what this means for existing agreements, the granting of mining and petroleum titles and the protection of Noongar heritage.
A whole-of-government approach
The Settlement brings together a range of WA Government departments and instrumentalities within their various legislative and policy areas for sustainable outcomes and genuine partnerships with the Noongar people.
- Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Aboriginal Engagement Directorate
- State Solicitor's Office
- Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage
- Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety
- Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions
- Department of Communities
- Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development
- Department of Finance
- Department of Water and Environmental Regulation
- Water Corporation
Noongar Traditional OwnersShow more
Noongar peoples' Traditional Owner recognition through an Act of Parliament
A fundamental component of the Settlement is the recognition of the Noongar people as the Traditional Owners of the south west region of Western Australia. On 6 June 2016, the Noongar people were recognised, through an Act of the WA Parliament, as the Traditional Owners of the south west region of Western Australia.
Read more about the Noongar peoples' recognition through an Act of Parliament.
Noongar Agreement Groups
The Noongar Nation is one of the largest Aboriginal cultural blocs in Australia and covers the entire south-west corner of Western Australia. At the time of British settlement up to 15 Noongar language dialects existed. To learn more about the Noongar people visit the South West Aboriginal Land and Sea Council (SWALSC) Website, including Kaartidijin Noongar, and the Noongar Language Centre, and view the map of Indigenous Australia.
Find below links to the six Indigenous Land Use Agreement (ILUA) maps that form the South West Native Title Settlement, the major towns within these areas, and references to some of the Noongar language groups specific to the regions. The listing of language groups is not definitive and consultation with Noongar people from the region should be sought through the relevant Noongar Elders or Noongar Regional Corporation as outlined below. The South West Aboriginal Land and Sea Council can also assist with advice.
Six Noongar Regional Corporations were appointed by the Noongar Boodja Trust across October and November of 2022 to represent the six ILUA Agreement Groups (Agreement Groups), following endorsement by their Agreement Groups and the WA Government.
In June 2022 SWALSC was appointed by the Noongar Boodja Trust as the supporting Central Services Corporation, following endorsement by all six Agreement Groups and the WA Government.
On 9 December 2022 the rights and obligations under the Settlement’s ILUAs were transferred from the six Agreement Groups to the Noongar Regional Corporations, who along with the Central Services Corporation are the sole beneficiaries of the Settlement. Read the Noongar Corporations page for further information on the obligations and rights of all of the Noongar Corporations.
|Noongar Agreement Group||Noongar Regional Corporation||Towns within the Indigenous Land Use Agreement Area||People|
|Ballardong People ILUA||Ballardong Aboriginal Corporation||York, Northam, Hyden, Kondinin - ILUA Map||
|Gnaala Karla Booja ILUA||Gnaala Karla Booja Aboriginal Corporation||Mandurah, Bunbury, Donnybrook - ILUA Map||
|South West Boojarah ILUA||Karri Karrak Aboriginal Corporation||Busselton, Dunsborough, Margaret River, Pemberton, Nannup - ILUA Map||
|Wagyl Kaip and Southern Noongar ILUA||Wagyl Kaip Aboriginal Corporation||Katanning, Gnowangerup, Albany - ILUA Map||
|Whadjuk People ILUA||Whadjuk Aboriginal Corporation||Perth metropolitan area - ILUA Map||
|Yued ILUA||Yued Aboriginal Corporation||Jurien, Moora, Lancelin, Gingin - ILUA Map||
Separate to the South West Native Title Settlement is the Esperance Nyungar Indigenous Land Use Agreement.
Map of the South West Native Title Settlement Agreement Areas.
Noongar governanceShow more
The Noongar governance structure comprises three major components:
Noongar Boodja Trust - holds and delivers assets for the Noongar Corporations
Noongar Corporations - the representatives of the six Noongar Agreement Groups and the only beneficiaries of the Noongar Boodja Trust
Noongar Committees - a range of committees and structures that provide support, direction and influence over how the Noongar Boodja Trust is managed.
Noongar LandShow more
Noongar Land Estate
The Noongar Land Estate will provide the Noongar people with a significant asset to be developed in line with Noongar cultural, social and economic aspirations for the benefit of generations to come.
Read more about the Noongar Land Estate and the allocation of land.
Noongar Land Fund
A 10-year fund to support the land, joint management and heritage objectives of the South West Native Title Settlement.
Read more about the Noongar Land Fund.
South West Conservation Estate
The Department of Biodiversity Conservation and Attractions and the six Noongar Regional Corporations will enter into co-operative and joint management agreements for the care and protection of the Estate.
Read more about these agreements.
Noongar peoples' access to Crown Land
Land access licences will be provided to the six Noongar Regional Corporations to enable Noongar peoples' lawful access to certain unallocated Crown Land and unmanaged reserve land for customary activities.
Read more about access to Crown land.
Amendments to the water by-laws provide Noongar peoples access to Public Drinking Water Source Areas for certain customary purposes.
Read more about the importance of access to water source areas.
Noongar heritageShow more
The Noongar peoples’ connection to the land and the desire to improve access and protect places of significance, were key elements in the negotiation of the Settlement.
Two separate heritage agreements, the Noongar Standard Heritage Agreement and the Noongar Heritage Partnership Agreement, were negotiated.
- Noongar Standard Heritage Agreement (NSHA) ensures compliance with the Aboriginal Heritage Act and Regulations when a planned use activity may adversely impact an Aboriginal site. The Noongar Standard Heritage Agreement came into effect June 2015 and applies to WA Government departments and entities.
The Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage (DPLH) has developed a range of resources and templates for users of the NSHA. DPLH can also provide general guidance about the Act relevant to your circumstances.
- Noongar Heritage Partnership Agreement (NHPA) sets out the new relationship being forged with the Noongar people and the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage to preserve Noongar heritage.
Visit the DPLH website for more information about NHPA.
Community and economic developmentShow more
The Community Development Framework is a commitment between the WA Government and the Noongar People to a set of principles and priorities aimed at improving Noongar community development.
Read more about the Community Development Framework.
The Noongar Economic Participation Framework will assist Noongar business capacity and interests towards improving participation in the wider economy.
Read more about the Noongar Economic Participation Framework.
Noongar housing program
The transfer of housing assets to the Noongar Boodja Trust.
Read more about the Noongar housing program.
Capital works program
The WA Government will provide up to $6.5 million to establish offices for the Central Services Corporation and six Noongar Regional Corporations and conditional funds for the development of a Noongar Cultural Centre.
Read more about the Capital works Program.
A comprehensive list of documents relating to the South West Native Title Settlement is available on the Resources page.