Statement on the protection of the Djab Wurrung sacred trees

The newCardigan Committee stand in solidarity with the Djab Wurrung people who are fighting to protect the sacred trees on country. On 27 October 2020 the Victorian government sanctioned the destruction of a 350 year old Yellowbox, the Directions Tree. More sacred trees are currently under threat of destruction to make way for the upgrade to the Western Highway, Victoria. 

Sacred trees should be protected as cultural heritage sites. Many people in the newCardigan community who work in the GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives, museums) sector, work hard to protect our cultural heritage. However, cultural heritage is not only the artefacts, specimens, books, papers, and objects found within our collections, but exists in culturally significant sites across Australia. It must be safeguarded and protected for future generations.

We acknowledge the leadership of the Australian Society of Archivists, our friends and colleagues, for posting the Statement: Djab Wurrung directions tree destruction.

To the Djab Wurrung people: We are with you.

To the newCardigan community: Get vocal and call Daniel Andrews on (03) 9651 5000 and say “I’m calling to register my protest against the works on Djab Wurrung country”. If you reach a voicemail, remember to leave your full name and postcode. 

To the Victorian government: Shame on you. Listen to the voices of First Peoples who have cared for this land for over 65,000 years.

Kassi Hays
Andrew Kelly
Nik McGrath
Clare Presser
Hugh Rundle

For information on how to take action in protecting the sacred trees on Djab Wurrung country see