Answers to the Lead Poisoning / Sniffing Problem

 Sniffer walking on plane
ABC 15 May 2017, 7:36am  

Answers to the Lead Poisoning – Sniffing Problem

From where most who read this sit, it is hard to understand why young people would do such things or why their parents did little to stop them.

The following report covers 4 weeks education with Yolŋu elders and family groups dealing with the lead poisoning – avgas problem at Galiwin’ku in June 2017. It includes the people’s views as to what the underlying problems were and an outline of the educational material.

Central to the problem was that despite people all over the country knowing all about the avgas lead poisoning issues at Galiwin’ku, Yolŋu parents did not know what lead or lead poisoning meant. And secondly, the people believed that the government had stopped them disciplining their own children on the threat of being jailed.

Confusion and disempowerment reigns when the people are not seen as the main stake-holders and the information is not given to them in their own language.

The report is 52 pages long but for anyone who is truly interested to understand life on the other side of the cultural divide, I think you will find it interesting.

Richard Trudgen

Click here or on headings to DOWNLOAD Document

Answers to the Lead Poisoning / Sniffing Problem
Galiwin’ku June 2017


A Report for East Arnhem Mediation Service 2017



About Richard Trudgen

Richard was born in Orange NSW and trained as a fitter and turner. He moved to Arnhem Land in the NT in 1973 and became a community worker, learning to speak Djambarrpuyŋu. Has now worked with Yolŋu people for over 45 years. He was the CEO of Aboriginal Resource and Development Services (ARDS) for 10 years during which time he developed discovery education methodology with Rev Dr Djiniyini Gondarra OAM and also established Yolŋu Radio in 2003. He is the author of Why Warriors Lie Down and Die and facilitated ‘Bridging the Gap’ seminars, and delivered corporate training across Australia. He is currently the CEO of Why Warriors Pty Ltd, a community development social enterprise organisation working with Yolngu people. He spends his day writing, producing podcasts and building online learning platforms, producing videos and working face to face with Yolngu. He is also involved in building online cross-cultural training material to build understanding between Indigenous peoples and the Dominant Culture.

1 Comment

Add your comment:

  1. paul taylor

    Lets think differently about the root causes of some of our foundation issues, food sovereignty is certainly on the list. Without Nutritious fresh food grown locally by local people we are disempowered Lets think fresh food, community, family and self empowerment around good fresh food and not the poisonous food brought in by trucks kept in freezers. This is never going to give us the strength to sand tall and say NO. We can grow fresh food for local community that brings community together, lets talk food so community can clearly and make clear decisions about their lives. Affordable fresh food….interested?? lets talk more….thanks: Paul Taylor from Trust Nature.