For many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, 26 January is a painful date that marks the beginning of the ongoing dispossession of their land, violence, genocide and attempted erasure of their cultures.

26 January is a day of mourning. It is not a date to celebrate.

The YACVic offices will be open and staff will be working their usual hours on 26 January in solidarity with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and take a day’s leave at another time. We urge our members and others to join a growing number of organisations also working the public holiday.

YACVic also recognises that 26 January is not just another day at work, and racial justice goes far beyond working the public holiday. We actively encourage all non-Indigenous workers to use this time to discuss and plan ongoing action in your workplace that can drive meaningful, systemic change.

YACVic firmly believes that truth-telling about the violent history of Australia, and the continued impacts on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today, is a core part of our mission to propel action that inspires positive change for young people.

We applaud and stand with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people leading the way towards Treaty and truth.

We call on federal, state and local governments to follow their lead towards true sovereignty and self-determination.

Solidarity on 26 January is one of many ways to acknowledge the trauma and pain of colonisation in both the past and present. It’s also a reminder to commit to truth-telling, healing, and supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to sustain their culture for generations to come.

Media Contact: Katia Pellicciotta (she/her), YACVic Media & Communications Coordinator on 9267 3744 or

About Youth Affairs Council Victoria

Youth Affairs Council Victoria (YACVic) is the peak body and leading advocate for young people aged 12-25 and youth workers in Victoria. Our vision is that young people are active, visible and valued in their communities.