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The Githabul Native Title claim was lodged by Native title claimant Trevor Close in 1995. Mr Close received financial and legal help from the Canadian Government to study and become an expert in Native Title Law at the University of Technology in Sydney, Australia. Mr Close then used his legal training as a Native title lawyer to defeat the NSW Crown in the Federal Court of Australia. It was the first time in NSW history that the NSW Government had been forced to settle a Native title claim for traditional owners.
Mr Close spent fifteen years as a volunteer to force the NSW Government to respect his Githabul Elders and to come to Woodenbong to sign a treaty with the Githabul Tribal Elders. Over the many years of litigation of the claim, Mr Close was strongly supported by his Koorie children Sky, Seraphina, Marnie, Nea Bea, Yafalina and Korey. Seraphina Close now wants to become a Native title Lawyer like her father.
In Australia, an Aboriginal treaty is called an Indigenous Land Use Agreement and must be signed by a Federal Court Justice. In this case, Justice Catherine Branson signed the Githabul Treaty at the Woodenbong Common on 29 November 2007. The Githabul Native title claim made SBS World News as it was the first time Tribal Natives in the State of NSW had been able to prove that they still openly practiced their Tribal laws and ancient culture.
- Aborigines in big land claim win, BBC News Online
- Australian Tribe Gets Rights to Parks, Guardian Unlimited
- Tribe on high as heartland won back - The Australian - 11 September 2007