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South Australia - Legislation

Aboriginal Affairs Act 1962 (1962 - 1972)

  • Aboriginal Affairs Act 1962

    Aboriginal Affairs Act 1962, courtesy of AIATSIS.

Principal Act

The Aboriginal Affairs Act 1962 (Act No. 451963) was assented to on 15 November 1962 and commenced on 28 February 1963. Its full title was 'An Act to repeal the Aborigines Act, 1934-1939, and to promote the welfare and advancement of Aborigines and of persons of Aboriginal blood in South Australia and for other purposes'. It was repealed by the Community Welfare Act 1972 on 1 July 1972. The Aboriginal Affairs Act 1962 replaced the Aborigines Protection Board with the Aboriginal Affairs Board.


Key Provisions: Aborigines Protection Board replaced by Aboriginal Affairs Board. The new Board ceased to be the legal guardian of Aboriginal children. The duties of the Minister for Aboriginal Affairs include the management and regulation of reserves; general supervision and care over all matters affecting the welfare of Aborigines and persons of Aboriginal blood; 'in his absolute discretion to provide, in cases of need, when possible, for the maintenance and education of the children of Aborigines and persons of Aboriginal blood'; and 'to promote the social, economic and political development of Aborigines and persons of Aboriginal blood until their integration into the general community. The Board is to establish and maintain a Register of Aborigines and has the power to remove names of those persons 'who, in its opinion, are capable of accepting the full responsibilities of citizenship'. An applicant whose name the Board refuses to remove may appeal to a special magistrate. Amended by Aboriginal Affairs Act Amendment Act 1966/7 - provided for the establishment of Aboriginal Reserve Councils. Aboriginal Affairs Act Amendment Act 1968 - abolished the Register of Aborigines. Repealed by Community Welfare Act 1972.


 1844 - 1911 Aboriginal Orphans Act 1844
       1911 - 1937 Aborigines Act 1911
       1923 - 1937 Aborigines (Training of Children) Act 1923
             1934 - 1963 Aborigines Act 1934
                   1962 - 1972 Aboriginal Affairs Act 1962
                         1972 - Community Welfare Act 1972


Online Resources


Aboriginal Affairs Act 1962
Aboriginal Affairs Act 1962


Sources used to compile this entry: To Remove and Protect, South Australian Legislation, AIATSIS, 2009,;

Law Research Service, Melbourne Law School, Law Library, The University of Melbourne. 'Find and Connect Project - South Australia Legislation', 13 December 2013, held in the project files at the University of Melbourne eScholarship Research Centre.

Prepared by: Melissa Downing, Christine Moje