Indigenous Australians contribute to Inland Rail

Indigenous Australia Map courtesy of AIATSIS*

The Department and Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) acknowledge the significant contributions Indigenous communities are making to Inland Rail.
Indigenous groups along the Inland Rail alignment are numerous and varied and include the Wurundjeri, Taungurong, Yorta Yorta, Wiradjuri, Wailwan, Bigambul,  Wakka Wakka, Kamilaroi, Waveroo, Baruggam, and  Yuggera peoples.

Rail infrastructure projects have long supported enduring connections to community and country. Inland Rail will strengthen jobs, skills and supply chains, and managed respectfully, will contribute to resilience in local communities. 

Already there is a strong participation by Indigenous workers in the construction phase of Inland Rail, with operational participation also expected to be strong throughout regional Indigenous communities once the rail line is operational.  

Through active consultation, ARTC is committed to the minimisation of land impacts and have engaged with Traditional Owners, Elders and Community Leaders along the alignment for their ongoing insights into matters of cultural importance.
ARTC’s Inland Rail Indigenous Participation Plan sets out the company’s commitment to Indigenous communities, industry and government across four key areas of Respect and Recognition, Cultural Heritage, Indigenous employment and Indigenous Business.

Indigenous Australians’ historical connection to rail

Indigenous Australians historically have played a vital part in Australia’s infrastructure projects with Inland Rail being no exception.
Rail line construction in Australia first began in the 1800’s with Indigenous workers contributing to building our nation’s most iconic rail lines, including the Trans-Australian Railway and the iconic Ghan.


* This map attempts to represent the language, social or nation groups of Aboriginal Australia. It shows only the general locations of larger groupings of people which may include clans, dialects or individual languages in a group. It used published resources from 1988-1994 and is not intended to be exact, nor the boundaries fixed. It is not suitable for native title or other land claims. David R Horton (creator), © Aboriginal Studies Press, AIATSIS, and Auslig/Sinclair, Knight, Merz, 1996. No reproduction without permission of AIATSIS.