Media Release by The Hon Jenny Macklin MP

Sponsorship of 2009 United Nations Media Peace Award – Promotion of Aboriginal Reconciliation

The Australian Government will sponsor the 2009 United Nation’s Media Peace Award for the Promotion of Aboriginal Reconciliation.

This Award promotes understanding and awareness about humanitarian and social justice issues by recognising journalists who stimulate public awareness and influence policy change.

To encourage reporting on Indigenous Australia being told and to support excellence in their telling, the Government is providing $10,000 to the Promotion of Aboriginal Reconciliation Peace Award.

The Minister for Indigenous Affairs Jenny Macklin announced the Government’s sponsorship at a special Parliamentary screening of the acclaimed Australian film Samson and Delilah.

Samson and Delilah is a remarkable story of human resilience, demonstrating the capacity to care for each other against all odds.

As director Warwick Thornton said – “as soon as you knock down that black wall between Aboriginals and white Australia, a film like this becomes an Australian film and an Australian story. Not an Aboriginal story but a story about Australians.”

Reconciliation Week 2009 (27 May to 3 June) encourages positive relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians, which is essential for closing the gap.

The Government acknowledges the important work of organisations like the United Nations in the journey towards lasting reconciliation.

Nominations for the United Nations Media Awards 2009 will open on 1 July, with the winners announced in October.