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Although the 1960s is an era remembered mostly for drugs, sex and rock'n'roll, it was also a time when the Western Australian community was tackling some important social issues.

By 1967 the campaign for equal pay had proved effective. Premier David Brand's State Cabinet authorised the payment of male wage and salary rates to female Government employees who were doing work of equal value.

Protest March 

Courtesy of The West Australian

There were also significant changes in the rights of Aboriginal Australians, male and female.  In 1962 all Western Australian Aboriginal people gained the right to vote in both State and Commonwealth elections.  At this stage, enrolment to vote was voluntary for Aboriginal people.  (It was not until the 1980s that enrolment and voting in both State and Commonwealth elections were made compulsory for all eligible Aboriginal people, putting them on the same footing as other Australians.)

In 1967 more than 90% of Australian electors voted in favour of a referendum proposal to give the Commonwealth Parliament power to make special laws for Aboriginal people.


Acknowledgement of Country

The Government of Western Australia acknowledges the traditional custodians throughout Western Australia and their continuing connection to the land, waters and community. We pay our respects to all members of the Aboriginal communities and their cultures; and to Elders both past and present.