The state government has no intentions of following the lead of Victoria’s lower house by negotiating a treaty with the Tasmanian Aboriginal community.
The historic moment in Victorian Parliament on Thursday means the state could be the country’s first to formally establish a treaty.
The Northern Territory on Friday signed a memorandum of understanding to work towards a treaty while Western Australia has started a consultation process to set up an Independent Office of Aboriginal People.
The South Australian government had been working on a treaty but work stopped with the change of government after the March state election.
Aboriginal Affairs Minister Jacqui Petrusma said the government would not consider a treaty at a state level.
“Given this is a national issue, we favour a national approach to ensure equity between Aboriginal people regardless of which state they live in, and to promote discussion among all Australians on this issue,” she said.
“The Tasmanian Government will of course continue discussions with Tasmanian aboriginal people on issues important to them.”
Both Labor and the Greens favour a state-based treaty.
Labor leader Rebecca White said Labor took a policy to the election to establish a pathway towards a treaty and it remained its position.
“Tasmania risks being left behind other states on the path to reconciliation if the Tasmanian Liberals continue to refuse to engage in a discussion about treaty,” she said.
“It is disappointing that Premier Hodgman has relieved himself of the Aboriginal Affairs portfolio less than four years after he promised to reset the relationship with Tasmania’s Aboriginal community.”
Greens leader Cassy O’Connor said reconciliation with the Aboriginal community needed to produce tangible outcomes including land returns, progress on a treaty and an Australia Day date change.