Support for the kangaroo industry from Aboriginal Communities
Aboriginal communities who live with kangaroos are strong supporters of the kangaroo harvest. Several key ones such as the Coonamble Land Council and the Murdi Paaki Regional Aboriginal Assembly have articulated clear reasons for their support along the following lines:
• The Industry creates both employment opportunities and business opportunities for Aboriginal people. Not only do kangaroo meat works employ Aboriginal workers, but Aboriginal people have the great opportunity to start their own business centred around this industry by either becoming an accredited Kangaroo Harvester or through Transport of the final product.
• Kangaroos taken by the industry are not simply killed and wasted as they would be without the industry. Their lives, meat and pelts are put to a use, and this will give meaning to the lives of these kangaroos, making the culling more acceptable to Aboriginal people than if these resources were simply thrown away.
• The commercial industry will not eradicate Kangaroo populations. Rather it makes the Kangaroo population in Australia manageable. This helps ensure that the Kangaroo can co-exist in Australia sustainably. This is consistent with Australia’s national identity connection with the Kangaroo.
• While national symbols have value, they are not absolutes. They should not get in the way of reasonable government actions that uphold the national interests of the country (a sustainable Kangaroo population).
• Aboriginal people therefore believe that, many consumers around the world are doing the Kangaroo population a big favour by buying the products because that market enables a well regulated commercial culling to ensure the on-going survival of a sustainable number of Kangaroos.