Read the article, Speaking up for the Land Down Under, and answer the following reflection questions. Then share your answers in pairs or groups.
Questions for reflection
1. What does Vivianne McKenzie mean when she says, ‘If the government gets their way, we won’t be known as the Land Down Under, we’ll be known as the Wasteland Down Under’? Why is she concerned Australia will become a wasteland?
2. What do you know about nuclear waste? What questions do you have about nuclear waste? How can you learn more about the impacts of nuclear waste?
3. What are the pros and cons of dumping nuclear and medical waste in the Flinders Range in South Australia?
a. Why might the Australian government and some Adnyamathanha community members be for the dump?
b. Why might others be against it?
4. Why does Josephite Sister Michele Madigan believe that protecting the land of the Adnyamathanha is the Catholic Church’s responsibility?
5. Why is it important that Vivianne and her community educate people about how the nuclear industry has affected her community? What can we all learn from their past experience?
1. Break up into groups of three or four. Then research online how Australia Indigenous are connected to the land. Your group can pick a specific tribe and research their beliefs, traditions and cultures of respecting the earth. Then create a short presentation sharing your research with your class.
2. Learn more about the Adnyamathanha’s battle against allowing nuclear dumping in the Flinders Ranges. Read Josephite Sister Michele Madigan’s writings from Eureka Street. (https://www.eurekastreet.com.au/search.aspx?s=Michele%20Madigan.)
3. Explore the No Dump Alliance website. https://www.nodumpalliance.org.au/
You can also sign the No Dump Alliance’s petition to protect South Australia’s land. https://www.nodumpalliance.org.au/sign_the_petition_no_dump
4. Listen to our most recent Sneaky Jesus Song ‘Grandmother’s song’. Then write a reflection on how this song speaks the pain that Vivianne McKenzie describes in the article, ‘Speaking up for the Land Down Under'.
For younger students
Break up into groups of three or four and draw a poster showing how and why Australians should protect their land. When your group is finished, you can hang your posters around your school to raise awareness about Australia’s need to protect the land.
Image: Richman Gap. (By Heather, flickr. Creative Commons)