Uncle William Cooper, Yorta Yorta human rights activist

Seat of Batman to be renamed after William Cooper

Please note: this post contains images and names of deceased persons.

BREAKING: our federal seat is to be renamed for William Cooper, the great Yorta Yorta human rights leader! My respects to all in our suburbs who campaigned for two decades to rename Batman – to the Wurundjeri Land & Compensation Cultural Heritage Council Aboriginal Corp. who led the way, and to Darebin City Council for their advocacy.

I would have loved to have seen the wishes of the Wurundjeri Elders upheld in this renaming. They wanted the seat to be named Simon Wonga, after the Wurundjieri Ngurungaeta and diplomat who stood up to Batman and took the decisive actions that ensured the survival of Wurundjieri Clans and other Aboriginal Clans.

Uncle William Cooper, Yorta Yorta human rights activist

But it’s a great day, seeing our electorate named for a leader of William Cooper’s calibre. His leadership on human rights has been an inspiration to so many, including me. As an activist and a true citizen of the world, he tirelessly petitioned the state and Commonwealth governments on the rights of Aboriginal people in Victoria. He didn’t let constant rejections faze him. He led the ONLY private citizens’ protests in the world against the atrocities of the Nazis in the Kristalnacht. Cooper is an apt name for the most progressive electorate in Australia.

Published by

Alex Bhathal

Social worker; refugee advocate; environmental activist. National Director of Repower Health and President, AASW Victorian Branch; mum of two. Ran six times as the Greens candidate for the federal seat of Batman, former International Secretary of the Australian Greens; former Co Convenor of the Victorian Greens. But I'm no longer with the party.

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