Use Australia Day to move forward says elder


Aboriginal elder Robert Isaacs says Australia Day is the perfect time for the nation to move ahead.
Aboriginal elder Robert Isaacs says Australia Day is the perfect time for the nation to move ahead.

Australia Day can be used as a day to demonstrate that Australians can all come together and move forward, according to Aboriginal elder and Langford resident Robert Isaacs.

The 2015 West Australian of the Year will present a speech in Mt Newman at the Australia Day event.

He said although Australia’s history was marred by the disregard of the first settlers, the nation has grown and the celebrations should include and acknowledge all Australians.

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“Some might say that it is not a day that Aboriginal people should celebrate because it represents invasion day, but this day is an opportunity for all of us to forget about our differences and focus on all the good thoughts we have done as a nation of people,” he said.

Dr Isaacs is a member of the stolen generation and has been a key figure in health. He was the first Aboriginal elected to local government for the City of Gosnells.

“The solution really should be for us all to find a way to include a celebration of Aboriginal culture and acknowledge the past as part of Australia Day,” he said.

“We should not politicise this occasion – our days are filled with politics each and every day.”