Dedicated seats in the State Parliament for Aboriginal Tasmanians would need to be in the House of Assembly rather than the Legislative Council, Aboriginal Land Council of Tasmania chairman Michael Mansell says.
A parliamentary committee, including government members, has unanimously recommended that the number of seats in the House of Assembly be restored to 35, after 10 seats were removed in 1998 - but the state government has said the issue is not a priority.
The committee's final report also recommended that a joint parliamentary inquiry be established to examine the possibility of introducing dedicated seats in the parliament for Aboriginal Tasmanians, acknowledging that there were numerous issues that would need to be worked through before legislation could be enacted to provide the seats.
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Mr Mansell has welcomed the report, saying dedicated seats would improve outcomes for the state's indigenous population.
He did stress, however, that the seats should be in the lower house rather than the upper house.
"We would want our representatives to be able to agitate Aboriginal issues freely in the lower house, where policy and laws are created," Mr Mansell said.
He said the eligibility of Aborigines to sit in the dedicated seats should be assessed in accordance with the Commonwealth definition of Aboriginality.
Political analyst Richard Herr, a staunch advocate for increasing the number of seats in the House of Assembly, said that before a further inquiry was held, the number of seats in the parliament had to be restored.
"[Another inquiry would] offer critics different forms of ammunition to use against the critical issue [of restoring the lower house]," Professor Herr said.
Aboriginal Affairs Minister Roger Jaensch would not confirm whether the government supported a further inquiry.
"We believe every Tasmanian has the right to stand for parliament if they choose to," he said.
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