Yes. Until the associated regulations and guidelines relating to the new laws are implemented, there should be a moratorium on any approvals relating to the harm and destruction of significant Aboriginal cultural heritage sites.
Adequate time and effort should be afforded to ensure Aboriginal people, government and other stakeholders can work together to co-design the related statutory guidelines and regulations and processes to support the new laws in practice. Ideally, a co-design framework with Aboriginal men and women – who have the knowledge and authority to represent each region of WA – should be involved in identifying the most appropriate approach to co-design for this aspect of the new laws. Aboriginal corporations likely to take on new responsibilities as a result of the new laws should also be closely consulted during drafting.
The Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Protection Co-Design Workshop was an important step in this endeavour.