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Whereis > QLD > Palm Island

Map of Palm Island, QLD 4816

Palm Island is an Aboriginal community located on Great Palm Island, also called by the Aboriginal name "Bwgcolman", an island on the Great Barrier Reef in North Queensland, Australia The settlement is also known by a variety of other names including "the Mission", Palm Island Settlement or Palm Community.

Palm Island is often termed a classic "tropical paradise" given its natural endowments, but it has had a troubled history since the European settlement of Australia. For much of the twentieth century it was used by the Queensland Government as a settlement for Aboriginals considered guilty of such infractions as being "disruptive", being pregnant to a white man or being born with "mixed blood".

The community created by this history has been beset by many problems and has often been the discussion point of political and social commentators. Of significant sociological concern is a lack of jobs and housing. Since its creation as an Aboriginal reserve, Palm Island has been considered synonymous with Indigenous disadvantage and violence. At the same time it has been at the forefront of political activism which has sought to improve the conditions and treatment of Australia's Indigenous peoples as well as redress injustices visited on them broadly as a race and on Palm Island specifically.
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