A deadly champion

By Liz Mellino

Shepparton-born Yorta Yorta Victorian Women’s Football League player Natarsha Bamblett has shown her support for the Victorian Government’s latest online campaign, Deadly Questions.

As the political debate on Australia’s first-ever Treaty legislation is under way, Victorians will now have access to a safe space to ask questions they may not have felt comfortable asking before.

The website, Deadly Questions, encourages all Victorians to ask any questions directly to Aboriginal Victorians to learn more about their history, culture, and the purpose, value and process of Treaty.

Ms Bamblett is one of 10 Deadly Question Champions — Aboriginal people who are in the public eye or who have made a significant contribution to the state.

These champions draw on their own knowledge, experiences and history to answer people’s questions which are lodged online.

The website allows people to ask any question they have, within a 130-character limit, and it is then lodged with the Champions and other Aboriginal Victorians.

Users can also view any other questions which have been asked and read the responses that have been given.

‘‘Being a Deadly Questions Champion involves answering questions from the wider nation and non-Indigenous people about the Aboriginal culture, people, everyday life and challenges,’’ Ms Bamblett said.

‘‘Anything that people may have been to scared to ask about in the past, this gives them the opportunity to have their say and for us to answer those questions.’’

The website states it is a way to begin the conversation by allowing people to ask any questions they may have felt could offend or would be to uncomfortable to ask.

Ms Bamblett is not the only Champion with a link to our town, with Shepparton-born Adam Briggs and Jarman Impey also showing their support for the campaign.

‘‘I think having a strong connection of a Champion from the Shepparton area is important,’’ she said.

‘‘I hope we get support from the town and get people involved in the process of getting to learn about our culture a bit more.’’

The website shares the slogan ‘you ask, Aboriginal Victorians answer’, and includes the word ‘deadly’, meaning cool or great to Aboriginal people.

Ms Bamblett said the platform allowed not only Aboriginal people but non-indigenous people ‘‘to come together to unite and to work towards bigger things for our future’’.

‘‘It is important for everyone to normalise these questions that people have always been scared to ask to ensure our kids don’t grow up not knowing these things,’’ she said.

‘‘It is not about shame or guilt, let’s learn, share and grow together.

To find out more or to ask a question head to