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Confirmation of Aboriginality and Torres Strait Islander Identity Procedures

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Section 1 - Overview

(1) These Procedures describe the documentation and processes required when individuals wish to access benefits and services available to Australian Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people within the University of New England.

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Section 2 - Scope

(2) These Procedures will apply to all individuals seeking to access a benefit or service available at the University of New England specifically reserved for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people.

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Section 3 - Procedure

(3) These Procedures will apply to all students and employees seeking to access benefits, services or opportunities available to Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people at the University of New England. This includes employment opportunities, scholarships, student services, representation on internal committees and programs, and representation on behalf of the University externally.        

(4) To confirm Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander descent the following documentary evidence will be required to address the criteria set out in the Rule:

  1. a letter stamped with the common seal and signed by the chairperson of an Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander Land Council in whose area the person lives or has previously lived.
  2. a letter stamped with the common seal and signed by a delegate of an incorporated Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander organisation where the majority of the governing body are Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander persons.

(5) Confirmation must be approved by a resolution at a formal meeting of the organisations governing body and the resolution number must be recorded and be stamped with the Common Seal of the organisation and signed by the authorised signatories.

(6) In cases of Stolen Generation or disconnection from family, the panel will consider applications where a person can provide clear supporting documentary evidence from Link Up or such family history reunification services that your family heritage is Australian Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander descent.

(7) Proof of receipt of Abstudy will not be accepted as confirmation.

(8) Confirmation from an employee or student of the University will not be accepted.

(9) The individual is responsible for confirming their own Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander identity.

Assessing Panel and Responsible Officer

(10) Documentary evidence provided by an applicant shall be assessed by a panel of three (3) Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander employees (who are not related, and who are not supervisor/employee) or where applicable a responsible officer of the University.

(11) The panel or responsible officer may conduct a full or random audit of evidence provided to ensure details are correct and legitimate.

(12) The panel or responsible officer may request further information and /or an interview where it determines that further verification is required or uncertainty exists.

Authority and Compliance

(13) The Procedure Administrator, Director Human Resource Services, pursuant to the University’s Confirmation of Aboriginality and Torres Strait Islander Identity Rule makes these procedures.

(14) UNE Representatives and Students - must observe these Procedures in relation to University matters.

(15) These Procedures operate as and from the Effective Date. 

(16) Previous Procedures relating to the confirmation of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander identity are replaced and have no further operation from the Effective Date of this new Procedure.

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Section 4 - Definitions

(17) Effective Date means - takes effect on the day on which it is published or on such later day as may be specified in the procedure.

(18) For the purpose of these Procedures, an Australian Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander person is one who:

  1. is of Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander descent;
  2. identifies as an Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander person and;
  3. is accepted and known as an Aboriginal person by the community in which he or she lives or has lived.

(19) Benefit means access to any student placement, scholarship, staff or student position on committees and employment specifically identified for an Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander person.

(20) Responsible Officer is a Senior Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander employee of the University of New England.

(21) Relevant panel will consist of three Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander employees of the University of New England who are not related, and who are not supervisor/employee.

(22) Link Up assists Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander people to trace their family history. 

(23) Reunification Program assists Aboriginal and or Torres Strait Islander people who have been affected by past Australian Government removal policies. 

(24) UNE Representative means a University employee (casual, fixed term and permanent) contractor, agent, appointee, Council member, adjunct, visiting academic and any other person engaged by the University to undertake some activity for or on behalf of the University.  It includes corporations and other bodies falling into one or more of these categories.

(25) Student means an Admitted Student or an Enrolled Student, at the relevant time.

  1. Admitted student means a student who has been admitted to a UNE course of study and who is entitled to enrol in a unit of study or who has completed all of the units in the UNE course of study.
  2. Enrolled student means a student who is enrolled in a unit of study at UNE.

(26) UNE Act means the University of New England Act 1993 No 68 (NSW)