Palm Island open letter

 If you support the Palm Island Community Store Aboriginal Corporation’s bid to run the Palm Island store instead of a government apponted committee, please leave your name in the comments section below.  Please feel free to make a short comment.   

At an appropriate time determined by PICSAC the letter and comments will be passed on to Mr. Beattie and Mr. Pitt.

Please pass the link to this page as far and wide as you can.

For information about the PICSAC bid



To the Premier of Queensland, Mr. Peter Beattie and the Queensland Minister for Communities, Mr. Warren Pitt.

We the undersigned are writing to you regarding the privatisation of the Palm Island store and the decision the government has to make in awarding the tender for the store.

You are faced with a choice between a body dominated by government representatives and people not from the Palm Island community or a corporation controlled by the people of Palm Island. We strongly urge you to support community self management as a key principle in making your decision.

We hope you will see the development of the Palm Island Community Store Aboriginal Corporation as a very significant and positive step in building a culture of economic enterprise, self responsibility and community pride amongst the people of Palm Island. We certainly do.

Please support this innovative development and award the Palm Island store tender to the Palm Island Community Store Aboriginal Corporation.

Yours sincerely,

The people whose names appear below.


(If you just want to leave your name with no comment please write your name or “I agree” inside the comment box to be able to post. If your post won’t go through and you get a “duplicate message” notice when you try again, it has got caught in the spam filter and will show up within a day). 


172 responses to “Palm Island open letter

  1. Ian James

    I agree

  2. Leonie Chester

    All levels of government should be doing everything in their power to assist Aboriginal people achieve self determination, not thwart their efforts at every turn.

  3. Charles Williams

    I agree 0

  4. Tia

    Self determination, Aboriginal control over Aboriginal things. Privatisation is to feed the greed of govt and corporations. People before Profit.

  5. Stephanie Miller

    I Agree.

  6. the prices for daily necessities are hugely marked up at this store.the type of mark up you might begrudgingly accept at a resort,yet these prices are well beyond those of the mainland and also well exceed the prices of its neighbouring island ‘magnetic island’?why is this?if i had to pay up to 400% more for my basic needs in townsville..i would be upset along with around 160,000 residents of townsville!

  7. Aboriginal Self Determination NOW!!!

  8. Jenny Stirling

    I agree

  9. The Indigenous Social Justice Association – Melbourne is an activist group campaigning to stop Aboriginal deaths in custody. To end deaths in custody means looking at the big picture. Indigenous control of Indigenous affairs is essential. This is why we support the bid for the Palm Island store to be controlled by people from the local Palm Island community.

  10. Errol Wyles

    I Agree .

    Errol Wyles

  11. Michael Carden

    I support the corporation controlled by the aboriginal people

  12. Peter Hanley

    I agree

  13. Christine Howes

    This has been going on for years and years and years and enough is enough – Mr Beattie, stores on community should be community-owned and community-managed, no two-ways about it, and it’s your responsibility to make sure that happens – the Palm Island store for Palm Island people!

  14. Rae Norris

    The last thing Palm Island or any other Aboriginal community needs is more white interference in their lives. Show that all the rhetoric about economic development means something and give the store to the people. They’re sure to do a better job because they’ll be doing it for their own benefit, not for take-away profit.

  15. Keith Kaulfuss

    I agree

  16. Cheryl Kaulfuss

    Palm Island community need to have control over their store. Indigenous control of Indigenous affairs is essential!

  17. Gerry Gillen

    I support the ideals of the Indigenous Community on Palm Island to run their own store. The Queensland Government can offer support and expertise, but not take it over.

  18. Fairlie Arthur

    The Palm Island community has a worthwhile model in place to ensure the efficient running of the Store, for the benefit of the whole community.

    Politicians give well-rehearsed speeches on “practical reconciliation” and “employment opportunities” yet fail to bring these into reality.

    The Palm Island Community Store Aboriginal Corporation SHOULD be running the Palm Island Store – there is no other right decision.

  19. Paul Daicos

    I agree – the Palm Island Community Store Aboriginal Corporation should be given the tender to run the Palm Island Store – THERE IS NO OTHER RIGHT DECISION !!!

  20. Howard Tankey

    I agree

  21. self determination begins at the community level. i and the indigenous social justice association strongly support this move but management must be controlled by the community and not one ‘strong’ family.


  22. hilda buckley

    I agree

  23. A community store should be run by the community and benefit the community. Buraucrats have no business in a community store.

  24. Russell Dovey

    This is a no-brainer, folks. The local community can manage the store much more efficiently than any out-of-towners, since they can respond quickly to changing demands.

  25. Andrew Greig


  26. Diet Simon

    I agree.

  27. Tiffany McComsey

    I agree.

  28. Frances Bond

    I agree

  29. Rod Bray

    A store run by the local community can better service the community while fostering autonomy, pride and generating employment. While doing this any profits would remain in the community.

    The government proposed alternative is condescending and goes counter to their stated aims in relation to this community and others, similar.

  30. June Magrath

    I agree.

  31. Eleanor Dilley

    I agree. It’s time something positive happened for the people of Palm Island.

  32. Sandra Newham

    The management of thePalm Island community store should be controlled by their community.

  33. Glenn Newham

    I agree

  34. Anne McPherson

    Having recently had the pleasure of meeting and talking with two people from Palm Island, I would strongly support an Aboriginal Corporation running the local store. It is an important service to the people living on Palm Island, would provide employment opportunities, and the chance to manage and control the store. We certainly need some more examples of Indigenous people having a say and having more control over their lives and their communities.

  35. Kathryn Fisher

    I believe that the government should be supporting and delivering management training for all Aboriginal business’s on government reserves and letting the people run their own stores and services. However these position’s should be filled by people who are honest and genuinely seek to better the outcomes for future development for all in the community.

  36. kate smith

    This is a no-brainer – with the abolition of CDEP and the intervention task teams that the Federal Government has now mobilised in NT Aboriginal communities, where is the opportunity to follow through on self-determination for Aboriginal communities.

    Give people a chance to earn a wage – not a hand out on Palm Island and be brave enough to allow Palm Island to run their own business.

    The situation on Bathurst Island, the Tiwi Islands in Northern Territory is that the club is owned by peoples off the island and all the funds leave the island. Don’t allow this happen on Palm Island. They have suffered enough.

    Be brave!

  37. Jennifer Symonds

    I fully support the Palm Island Community to manage the Palm Island Store. I have seen stores in remote communities managed by outsiders who charge exorbitant prices and are obviously taking advantage of the local community. I think it is a disgrace and I think the local community managing their own store makes much more sense.
    (I couldn’t work out how to sign the petition online, but am happy for you to forward this email on to the appropriate people.)

  38. Ann Longridge

    Another takeover bid!

  39. Lee O'Mahoney

    Dear Mr Beattie,

    I support PICSAC running the local store rather than government involvement. These people have been through enough.

  40. Doug Hewitt

    Mr Premier,

    Please give priority to Community management of the store. The indigenous people must be encouraged to manage businesses in their own country.

  41. Carolyn Long

    Mr Beattie

    There should be no question here! It is long over due. Please provide the people of Palm Island with a opportunity to work together to create a stronger and proud community.

    Thank you

  42. Tania Patterson

    Community members and ‘ownership’ is the hallmark of a successful venture in any community. I support the notion of the community running their local store.

  43. Vicki Couzens

    i agree

  44. Alan and Sheree Daniels

    The Queensland Government haven’t helped at all. How about leaving it to the people who know the situation best, the people who live on Palm Island?

  45. Greg Jenkins

    I agree.

  46. Janet Drummond

    I agree.

  47. Cyndie Bignell

    I agree

  48. yaraan bundle


  49. Otis.laurie

    So true Yaraan, respect to you sister.

  50. Vincent Peters

    I agree

  51. Gaille Abud

    i agree

  52. Anna Burke

    I agree

  53. Oriel and Peter Glennen

    We agree!!

  54. Ionas N Yarker

    This is embarassing excuse me while I hide my head in shame

    it’s not our land or it is our land if the respect is there for those who are the land …

    think about that…

    respect and allow the people of this land to stand strong and beautiful … beauty full ..

    that simple … simple that

    … I mean really … yeah really …

    With great repsect

    understanding yet really not understanding

    leave palm island alone

    recieve my peace fullness in return


  55. Hazel Green

    I agree

  56. maree gathercole

    Let aboriginal people take care of their own aboriginal store. Let aboriginal people control aboriginal affairs.

    Remember Coronderk – aboriginals made a profit so were shipped off to Gippsland

  57. Kim Radford

    I agree

  58. Mandy Pickett

    I agree

  59. Virginia Burns

    I agree. Mr Beattie, let’s see a decision that shows a government willing to make a new, positive start on Palm Island, after so much pain.

  60. Tracey Quinn

    A community store should be run by the community and benifit the members of that community. Please do something right for these people and give them the support they need to run this store for themselves. Do not give it to those who are a fuelled by greed and will take another thing away from a people that have already lost so much. They need our support not another kick in the pants.

  61. Rod MacGregor

    I agree

  62. Sue Anglim

    I agree

  63. leann j edwards

    here we go again they say they want to help wll leave us to our own methods and maybe we will suceed

  64. Tim Knox

    Mr Beattie, the store on Palm Island should be community-owned and community-managed. There should be no question here! You say you and you government want to help Indigenous Queenslander with self determenation, so provide the people of Palm Island with a opportunity to work together to create a stronger and proud community. It is your responsibility to make sure that happens – the Palm Island store for Palm Island people!

  65. Margaret Duckett

    I agree. This could be an important initiative. It is also essential to develop opportunities where the money and the drive stays within a community

  66. Kath Baldini

    I agree with Aboriginal people working with Aboriginal people.

  67. Jane Bligh

    I AGREE!!!

  68. olivia riddington

    i agree

  69. Liz Jones

    I agree!!

  70. Vicki Clark

    I agree

  71. Sharon Whitewood

    I agree

  72. Rebecca Lee

    If Palm Island has a store, the locals should have the right to run it! The opposing group have their own agenda, which I doubt is concerned with having any benefit for the local community. If the PICSAC are running it, they will get the best deals for the produce they want, not unlike the fair market trade that happens throughout ‘white’ Australian communities.
    Nobody else really has the right to run it.

  73. When you empower people you loose control of them, every dictator knows that!!!!.

  74. Georgina Gartland

    Please support this Initative by the Palm Island Store, Aboriginal Corporation.
    Report after reports recommend A&TSI ownership and empowerment. Let’s move forward to practical reconciliaiton and provide a real future through employment and opportunity.

  75. Susan Ambler

    I agree – and i have just heard Fiona Stanley, former Australian of the Year, speaking on the radio about the importance of local self determination to improve outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, especially in regard to despair and abuse, this is a very easy step for you to take as there is a local community group ready to take on this job.

  76. Di Johnson

    I agree.

  77. Jim McCarthy

    I agree

  78. Bruce and Roslynn Hogben

    We strongly support for the Palm Island Community Store Aboriginal Corporation’s bid to manage the Palm Island store.

  79. Jan Aitken

    I agree with the opinion expressed in the above letter.

  80. Kitty Billings

    I agree

  81. Katie Bestevaar

    I support the Palm Island community’s right to manage their own store. Self-determination begins at the local level.

  82. laura Gartland

    I Agree

  83. Lorraine McCarthy

    I agree and urge that the Palm Islanders be allowed to run their own store

  84. Arthur Carter

    On what basis can the government in Brisbane decide that our Palm Island brothers & sisters aren’t capable or worthy enough to run their own community? Why is the profit motive more important than faith in a community??

  85. M. Andrea

    I agree entirely.

  86. Debra Annear

    Please support the Palm Island Store Aboriginal Corporation Initiative.
    Every report ever written strongly recommends A&TSI ownership and empowerment as a means towards what should be the goal and aim of every Australian to reconcile with, say sorry to, and provide a real and tangible future through respect, employment and opportunity for the Indigenous People of Australia.

  87. Frank Hytten

    When will we learn that the only way to help is to work at the direction of, with and along side and Aboriginal people.

    To those with power, the more you impose, the more you oppress and the more you create resistance, anger, helplessness and dispair. Offer support, expertise and resources – things that have been stolen from Aboriginal people anyway – and a positive future becomes possible.

    Self-determination is the only way to empower, skill and build community – any/every community can only stand tall with pride when they are determining thier own future.

  88. Russell Porter

    Of course self-determination for our A&TSI brothers and sisters is essential – it worked for 60,000 years until us non indigenous people turned up and began systematically and brutally to steal it from them. Palm Island is a microcosm of the larger global history of dispossession and coercion of first peoples. If the Queensland government can finally begin the process of restitution by handing back control in this one community, it will be a small step towards redressing historical injustices that have echoes around Australia and across the planet.

  89. Colleen Mack

    I agree
    It will help with our peoples’ self determination and only we can fix the problems of our people so give us go!

  90. Lorraine Austin

    Aboriginal people should be in control of the stores in their communities
    all the best

  91. Lorraine Austin

    I agree

  92. Bernadette McPhee

    I agree, please support the Locals.

  93. Helen Weavers

    Having shopped at the Palm Island Store, I was amazed at the high prices compared with those charged on nearby Magnetic Island. The Community Council should be encouraged in their bid to run the store and further indigenous involvement in managing Palm Island.

  94. Keith Weavers

    Have spent a few days on Palm Island and am aware of some of the needs of the people. Need to be able to run their own affairs so I support this petition.

  95. Tanja Dreher

    Indigenous control of Indigenous affairs is essential.

  96. Lee Lindstrom

    Indigenous control of Indigenous affairs is essential.

  97. Kate English

    I agree

  98. Kevin Conway

    I agree. How can we expect good nutrition if food prices are too high.

  99. Kathleen Moore

    I Agree

  100. Leanne Fary

    I strongly agree

  101. Pat McPhee

    I agree

  102. Jennifer Johnston

    I agree that the Palm Island Community should be encouraged to run their store.

  103. Laura Mansour

    I agree. The Palm Island community should be able to run their own store. The community should be encouraged to take control of their own affairs.

  104. Kerri Douglas

    I agree, why should people outside of the community be responsible for what happens within the community!

  105. Julie Tipene-O'Toole

    I agree

  106. I’m writing this in support of the Palm Island Community Store Aboriginal Corporation’s bid to manage the Palm Island Store, for a sustainable economy they are the best long term choice.

  107. Rachael Sandy

    I agree

  108. Rohini Agnew

    The needs of the Palm-Island- Community are undisputably best supported by members of the community. Outsiders, no matter their good intentions, lack the awareness and inner knowledge of life and living within this community, and run the risk of making subjective judgements that are contrary or even detrimental to supporting the needs and well-being of the people of this community.

  109. Megan Piscioneri

    I agree …

  110. Penny Jones

    I agree

  111. Mari Lourey

    I agree.

  112. Karin Chai

    I agree.

  113. Annie Delaney

    I’m writing in support of the Palm Island Community Store Aboriginal Corporation’s bid to manage the Palm Island Store.

  114. Earle Cleaver

    I totally agree,

  115. Angus Frith

    I agree

  116. Eva Grunden

    Support self determintion of indigenous people, keep them in control of their lives, their store

  117. Tracey Callander

    I agree.

  118. Jean Stokx

    allow the aboriginals to run their own store, help them to do so.

  119. Philip Kidner

    The Aboriginal rights to operate this store should be a priority.

  120. Kathleen Williamson


  121. Suzanne Martin

    I agree.Please give these people their dignity

  122. Melissa Kerr

    I totally agree

  123. J L Causer

    Agreed. THe Community Store Aboriginal Corporation seems a far better choice. Good luck. Hope you get some justice. Hare Krsna.

  124. paul walter

    Leave it be. live and let live.

  125. Helena Bond

    Please award the tender to the locally based consortium . Self-management is needed on Palm!

  126. Randal Ross

    “If you had known, even you, especially in this your day, the things that make for your peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. For days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment around you, surround you and close you in on every side, and level you, and your children within you, to the ground, and they will not leave in you one stone upon another, because you did not know the time of your visitation” (Lk 19:41-44) – If Christ represented Truth and Freedom- Then it’s time we as Australian Indigenous did the same in unity. (I totally agree)

  127. Drew Hutton

    I was gobsmacked on my first visit to Palm Island to be told that the store was NOT owned by the community. I agree.

  128. Terrence Whyte

    We are alive, because we have survived… so let us seek our own destiny and let us control our own future!

    I agree

  129. Sue Rienks

    Yes! The Palm Island community should own and manage their community store.

  130. yvonne andrews

    Palm Island people should be in control of the community store. I agree

  131. It would be lovely to see our own people managing their own businesses on the island…there is so much potential over there. But please first lets have some support of skills and the education in knowing how to run a business successfully….from
    -managers skills
    -managing staff (& staff PD)
    -managing finance
    -understanding of goods & services and the transporting of goods to the island…and the cost involved etc. etc
    We want success but with business success comes a high standard of education and a lot of hard work….we are tired of being ripped off!

  132. Jenny Muir

    I agree. Power to our people for self determination.

  133. Nicole Willis

    Totally agree. As a local, it would be great to see money generated from the store, go to building better infrastructure for the Palm Island community.

  134. Lee Anne Nangala Daylight-Lacey

    I agree

  135. Aidan Wilson

    I agree.

  136. Anna Jackman

    I agree. Power, peace and action to those working towards realising a whole, empowered, and rationally, not racially, governed australian society.

  137. Patricia Preston

    I agree

  138. Mark Minchinton

    Let Indigenous people take control of their own lives.

  139. Signing on behalf of the Women’s Reconciliation Network NSW …
    We fully support the Palm Island community’s bid to control their community store. It is their right.

  140. Peter Thomas

    I agree, and wish the community the very best of luck in getting out of this stitch up.

  141. Rebecca Copas (previously Marker)

    there are folk who try to tell Aboriginal people that the 1967 referendum was a vote made for Aboriginal people to manage Aboriginal business, so its about time that was enabled

    apart from any other fact, the health statistics can be dramatically improved only by Aboriginal people being provided real culturally appropriat information about what is available in the health food industry, and alternative health care industry, and which can be transported to remote shops at the same cost as transporting junk food

    not only has the government been abusing by not enabling Aboriginal management, but also by excluding Aboriginal businesses from learning about that alternative therapies and health food industry

  142. Shellee

    I agree. It is about time, for too long the affairs of the Aboriginal people have been made by the wrong people; let them finally decide what they want and what is best for them.

    Active involvement within a community that you live in, can only strengthen a community, i wish you all the best, i am sure it will be a great success!!

  143. David Nielsen

    I agree

  144. Shelly Nielsen

    I agree

  145. Rikke Hammer

    I totally agree!

  146. Juanita d'Oger de Speville

    I agree – keep the money on Palm!

  147. Gaven Ferguson

    I agree.

    The Government continues to say that these remote communities need to become self sufficient and independant but fail to see that the Palm Island Community Store Aboriginal Corporation is just that support.

    Give them the means to show you their ability.

  148. Camilla Percy

    I agree.

  149. Amanda Ryan

    I agree and think it’s a great way for Palm Island to make some money to help maintain facilities.

  150. Megan Rowsell

    I agree. Power to the Palm people!

  151. Fran Cooper

    Agree. Self determination is essential.

  152. Solveig

    greetings from Denmark

  153. Bettina Andrews

    i agree

  154. mary ziegler

    I stand with you,one in the spirit

  155. Corinna Bullock

    I agree and we all should support this great idea.

  156. Glenda Human

    I agree – It’s time

  157. Jessica Lee Lacey

    I Agree

  158. Cheryl Kaulfuss

    Palm Island Community Store must stay under community control. Everyone’s seen what a disaster consecutive Govts. (Liberal/Labor) have caused to N.T. communities under the so-called emergency response. Hands off Palm Island! It’s 2011 not 1788!

  159. mr beattie it should be left to the people of palm island they know what they want better than anyone

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