Environment SA News

NPWS to employ 15 new Aboriginal rangers to protect SA parks and wildlife

Fifteen new Aboriginal rangers will be employed to work in national parks across South Australia as part of a $5 million State Budget initiative aimed at increasing Aboriginal management of our natural environment.

NPWS to employ 15 new Aboriginal rangers to protect SA parks and wildlife
NPWS Rangers Glen Abbott and Jesse Evans

The new appointments are a key part of an election commitment to maintain, promote and sustain traditional cultural sites and practices within parks.

The South Australian Government is putting Traditional Owners at the forefront of our parks network, and ensuring their stories are an integral part of visitor experiences.

Other initiatives include:

  • Increasing the number of co-managed parks
  • Protecting Aboriginal heritage and cultural sites
  • Ensuring Aboriginal people have a voice in the future of the River Murray

The South Australian Government introduced co-managed parks in 2004, as well as transferring land in a protected area back to Aboriginal Peoples for the first time, in what is now known as the Mamungari Conservation Park.

The South Australian Government is committed to honouring the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples who have played a pivotal role in managing our landscapes for thousands of years.

Aboriginal Ranger Jesse Evans said having more Aboriginal rangers working in parks will be fantastic.

"I began working with the Department for Environment’s National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) nine years ago through an Aboriginal traineeship program and I’m now a full-time employee working as a ranger based in the Northern Lofty District," he said.

"Working in parks is something I’m passionate about and it will be great to see more Aboriginal rangers out on-park.

"I enjoy working on Country and being involved with local community groups, and having my voice heard and being able to make a positive change within the environment and the Country that I’m working on."