Uniform change to celebrate NAIDOC Week
Emerging Aboriginal artists have joined with WA Police and the Department of Aboriginal Affairs to create artworks that will feature on specially made uniforms and vehicle wraps as part of NAIDOC week celebrations.
Seven artists representing each WA regional district and the Metropolitan Region have created unique artwork for their respective district.
These designs will be proudly worn by 2100 officers across Western Australia from July 2, which marks the start of National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee week. The designs have also been applied to seven police vehicles – one for each regional district and one for the Metropolitan Region.
“This significant uniform change is a way for WA Police to further strengthen relationships with the Aboriginal community,” WA Police Commissioner Karl O’Callaghan said. “I expect this project will also enhance our officers’ understanding of the Aboriginal community and culture.”
The artworks were selected by the Department of Aboriginal Affairs through an annual exhibition that showcases emerging Western Australian Aboriginal artists. This year’s exhibition attracted more than 200 artworks from about 80 artists across the State. The project has been jointly funded by the Department of Aboriginal Affairs and WA Police through money set aside for community projects.
Aboriginal Affairs Minister Ben Wyatt said the project was a fantastic way to promote the rich Aboriginal cultural diversity across Western Australia.
“The project was conceptualised by an Aboriginal Elder, and WA Police and the emerging artists have made it happen. I applaud the WA Police for their commitment to engaging respectfully with Aboriginal people.”
As official Police uniform items, the shirts will continue to be worn on-duty by police officers well after NAIDOC Week, particularly at community events but also in regular policing environments.
Find out more about the artists and their work in our NAIDOC shared future pages.