Fighting when river runs dry

Chair of the Northern Basin Aboriginal Nations Fred Hooper wants lives to be taken into account in water policy. 
Picture: Louise Donges

Chair of the Northern Basin Aboriginal Nations Fred Hooper wants lives to be taken into account in water policy. Picture: Louise Donges

FRED Hooper knows that when the Darling River stops flowing, crime in the Aboriginal communities that rely on it as their lifeblood goes up.

Standing beside an old redgum near Mildura’s redeveloped riverfront, Mr Hooper pauses to admire the sight – the mighty Murray River is flowing strong.

“Let me tell you brother, this river looks a lot better than where I come from,” he says.

A Murrawarri man from the Culgoa region of northern NSW, Mr Hooper has seen rivers across the state at their driest.

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