Our way: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander protocols

In 2021, the National Archives of Australia announced new protocols to guide its Indigenous community engagement and records management. 

The Our way: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander protocols aim to develop a culturally competent organisation that will facilitate trust between the National Archives and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

The protocols enhance National Archives practices when working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander-related collections, and our access and engagement with peoples, groups and communities.

Embracing international developments 

The Our way protocols embrace emerging developments across archives internationally. 

They have been developed in line with the United Nations' Declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples and the International Council on Archives’ Tandanya – Adelaide declaration.

Embedding the protocols

Our way includes clear actions set out under 5 overarching protocols:

  • Leadership
  • Rights
  • Access
  • Authority
  • Acknowledgement.

Over the next 5 years, the National Archives will embed the protocols into its processes, culture and operations. This will include developing new guidelines and toolkits.