During the 1960s, the world was in the grip of enormous ideological change. In Australia, there was public outcry against the Vietnam War and growing support for equal pay for women, free education, fair wages, and the abolishment of the White Australia Policy. There was also growing support for radical changes to the rights, or lack thereof, afforded to Indigenous Australians. Helping to drive this movement was a woman who was intimately familiar with what it felt like to face racial discrimination. The daughter of a slave “blackbirded” from the South Sea Islands in the 1880s, Faith Bandler was inspired by the injustices she saw around her to co-found the Aboriginal-Australian Fellowship, and soon began the long fight that would eventually lead to a monumental referendum in 1967. But the referendum was only one part of a bigger whole, and in her latter life, Bandler continued to fight for those who were oppressed, eventually turning her attention towards her cultural roots in Vanuatu.
Join us as we grab our placards and take to the streets to celebrate Bandler’s contribution to the crucial work towards equality that continues in this country today.
Bandler, Faith, & Fox, Len. The Time Was Ripe: A History of the Aboriginal-Australian Fellowship (1956-69). Alternative Co-operative, 1983.
Heimans, Frank. Australian Biography. Faith Bandler. National Film and Sound Archive of Australia, 1993. https://www.nfsa.gov.au/collection/curated/australian-biography-faith-bandler-0
Lake, Marilyn. Faith : Faith Bandler, Gentle Activist. Allen & Unwin, 2002.