Eric Deeral was Queensland's first indigenous Member of Parliament. You can watch a ten minute documentary about the Parliament's acknowledgement of Mr Deeral in Hope Vale, and his attendance at the Inaugural Eric Deeral Indigenous Youth Parliament in Brisbane.
If you have Windows Media Player, click here to stream the video.
Alternatively, download a MP4 to watch the video on your device. (Video file is 150MB).
The Inaugural Eric Deeral Indigenous Youth Parliament was hosted by the Queensland Parliament on 28 June 2012. This historic event formed part of the week-long Indigenous Youth Leadership Program which was run in partnership by the Department of Communities' Office for Youth, Xstrata Coal and the Queensland Parliament.
Young Indigenous Leaders (aged 18 – 25) were selected to attend this program from a pool of self-nominated applicants living in urban, regional and remote Queensland communities. The youth parliament gives Indigenous Youth Members a forum to speak on matters of importance and debate a Youth Bill on education issues.
The annual Indigenous Youth Parliament event was renamed the Eric Deeral Indigenous Youth Parliament in hounour of Eric Deeral, Queensland's first Indigenous Member of Parliament. Mr Deeral was elected to the Queensland Parliament in 1974 representing the Far North Queensland electorate of Cook. On 18 June 2012, Hon Fiona Simpson MP, Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of Queensland, met with Mr Deeral and his family in Hope Vale to acknowledge his service to the Queensland community and seek his permission to rename the Parliament's annual Indigenous Youth Parliament in his honour. Mr Deeral graciously accepted this request and was a special guest of the Parliament attending this event.
Speaker Simpson said that the participants at today’s event greatly appreciated Mr Deeral’s presence and his words of encouragement. “This has been an historic opportunity to celebrate Mr Deeral’s achievements and to listen to his reflections from his time as a Member of Parliament. In particular Mr Deeral emphasised the importance of young people being involved in the democratic and political process. His leadership has been an example of service above self, which is an example we can all learn from, in whatever arena we exercise leadership,” Speaker Simpson said.
The photo above shows Eric Deeral, Hon Fiona Simpson MP, Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of Queensland, Hon Tracy Davis, Minister for Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services with all of the 2012 Indigenous Youth Members and mentors.
A Media Release about this event is here.