How to apply for an Essential Service Permit

Nine remote and regional areas/communities/homelands in South Australia which includes Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara have been declared Designated Areas under the Biosecurity Act 2015. This means there are now restrictions on entry to the APY Lands:

Biosecurity is the way that governments prevent, respond to and recover from human diseases and environmental hazards that threaten the economy, environment, and people.

Process for anyone applying for an Essential Service permit to enter the APY Lands, is to submit 

This form you need to send directly to the Decision Maker, Superintendent Paul Roberts-  (SAPOL) This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. seeking Approval / No Approval;

Under the new Bio-security (Human Bio-Security Emergency) (Human Coronavirus with Pandemic Potential) (Emergency Requirements for Remote Communities) Determination 2020.

This form will ask a series of questions, some of which include:

  1. Your personal details
  2. Purpose of Entry
  3. Has the applicant returned from overseas or Interstate in the last 14 days;
  4. Has the applicant been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19
    in the last 14 days;
  5. Has the applicant exhibiting any of the followings symptoms?
    Fever, Cough, sore throat, tiredness, shortness of  breath
  6. Is the applicant aware and applying social distancing, hygiene protocols during entry;
  7. Does the applicant have work practices in place that would reasonably limit interaction with community members?

Applicants also need to fill in an APY Permit application permit application form

Along with a Current National Police Check;

Please send this form directly to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The Decision Maker, Superintendent Paul Roberts-  (SAPOL), will send the Decision of the Designated Area forms outcome back to APY;

Once APY receive all your documentation and if you are Approved as an ESSENTIAL SERVICE/EXEMPTION, you will be sent an APY Permit.

This will be clearly marked on your Permit, so please keep a copy in your possession AT All Times.

Any queries please contact APY Permits 89548104.

The Biosecurity Act is in force now. You must stay where you are and only travel if you are gettingfood from your community store or visiting a health clinic for regular medicines/check-ups.

APY will continue to work with SA Police under the Biosecurity Act to make sure no persons, not even Anangu, enters the APY Lands unless they are providing an essential service or on approved compassionate grounds

The Board have provided you with their most recent decisions on these matters;

  • The Board encourages all Anangu to stay at home and to not travel across the APY, Ngaanyatjarra and Northern Territory communities until further notice.
  • Anangu must not be encouraged to attend large gatherings, funerals and cultural events.
  • Access to the APY Lands from outside agencies and visitors will be restricted to Essential travel only.
  • Permits, police check and Designated Area applications are required before granting entry to those deemed as Essential services.
  • Anyone who is feeling sick with a cold or flu like symptoms, must stay at home and if it continues to get worse, please make contact with the clinic.
  • APY continues to work with our stakeholders on a daily and ongoing basis, to develop a holistic approach across the APY lands.  More information and updates will be released as it comes to hand.



AS AT 28 AUGUST 2019

Permits are required for entry onto the APY Lands pursuant to Section 19 of the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Land Rights Act of South Australia.

Limiting who may have access to the APY Lands is a way of ensuring that Anangu will be able to:

  • Address the impacts of colonisation on their culture
  • Continue their culture and contribute to the wider Australian culture
  • Develop their own economy
  • Contribute to the wider Australian economy

When to Apply for a Permit

Permits for the APY Lands are issued annually and all permits expire at the end of each financial year, unless otherwise stated to expire earlier on the issued Permit.

Permit Renewals MUST be submitted for consideration by May 30 of each year.

You must apply for your permit 30 days before your intended visit to the APY Lands.


Fee for Permit Application

$22.00 per Adult

$11.00 Concession Seniors and Children


Who Must Apply for a Permit

The APY Permits Officer processes the following types of permit applications:

  • Employees of NGO’s based on the APY Lands
  • government officials
  • genuine Parliamentary candidates
  • transport operators air and road
  • media
  • visitors with an authorised work purpose
  • visitors to families living and working on the APY Lands
  • APYLRA (Entry to the Lands) By-Law 2009 notification of Ministerial Approval for Entry on to the APY Lands

All other types of requests for entry onto the APY Lands are referred to the Development and Planning Officer attached to the Consultation Land and Heritage Unit for a fee for service enterprise assessment. Please follow the link to Consultation Land and Heritage Unit for further information about this Unit. You would go to this site if you fit into these categories:

  • Tour groups
  • School education groups
  • Members of Australian Defence Forces undertaking training courses/excursions
  • Miners and mineral explorers
  • Cattle graziers
  • Art collectors
  • Recyclable materials collectors, for example car body removalists
  • Anyone with a private enterprise intent
  • Researchers
    AIATSIS Guidelines for Ethical Research in Indigenous Studies
  • Museum and Gallery operators
  • Film makers
  • Television Stations

Requirement for National Police Clearance Certificate

APY have determined that it is necessary and reasonable that applicants for permits submit a Police Clearance before a permit is issued. Your Permit Application will not be assessed unless you submit a National Police Clearance Certificate.

National Police checks online

The type of criminal offences that may lead to a permit not being approved includes:

Violent or sexual offences

Substance abuse offences

Dishonesty type offences

APY would like all communities, employing agencies and service providers to support these decisions, which were made at the request of our members, and at the same time be prepared to accept a decision when one is made.

APY desires all people working on the Lands to be good role models and every employing agency should try to maintain a high standard of the people they employ.

Non-compliance with Permit Conditions and Unauthorised Entry onto the APY Lands

If you enter the APY Lands without a Permit or breach a Condition of Entry, then APY will obtain assistance from South Australian Police and have you removed from the APY Lands.

APY will also file proceedings against you in the Magistrates Court of South Australia under section 19(5)(c) of the APY Land Rights Act which provides that the maximum penalty for an offence against subsection (5b) is a fine of $2 000 plus $500 for each day (if any) during which the convicted person was on the lands, or a particular part of the lands, in contravention of the condition.

You will have to defend the proceedings.

Download Permit Application Forms Here

Renewal notification for Permits

Download Permit Application Forms Here

pdf Permit Application Form (General) (215 KB)

pdf Permit Application Form (Research) (217 KB)

pdf Permit Application Form (Employees) (183 KB)

pdf Permit Application Form (Media) (278 KB)

Media Permit Applications will be referred to PY Media who will than provide advice to Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Permits Officer whether a Permit should be issued. There will be additional separate costs to the applicant, determined by and payable to PY Media.

APYLRA (Entry to the Lands) By-Law 2009 notification procedure

Submit your Permit Application Form, National Police Clearance Certificate and Credit Card details to:

Permits Officer Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara
PMB 227 Umuwa via Alice Springs NT 0872
TEL: 08 8954 8111 FAX: 08 8954 8110

EMAIL: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Transit Permits for Crossing the APY Lands

Transit permits are NOT ISSUED to tourists/travellers/4WD enthusiasts wishing to pass through any part of the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Lands.

Conditions of Entry onto the APY Lands

Your Permit, once approved, enables you to conduct your business on the APY Lands but you (the Permit Holder) must observe the following conditions at all times:

  1. Permit Holder must inform yourself of and comply at all times with, the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Land Rights Act (1981) as amended.
  2. The permit holder must comply with any laws currently in force concerning the sale and possession of alcohol and/or other volatile substances on the Lands.
  3. This permit does not authorise the entry of any person to a dwelling or living area of a camp occupied by, or belonging to, an Aboriginal without the prior consent of the owner or occupant.
  4. Issue of this permit does not imply that notice of intention to visit the Aboriginal land specified has been served upon the Traditional Owners concerned. The permit holder is responsible to ensure that Aboriginal communities are informed of their intention to visit.
  5. This permit is valid only to enable the permit holder to perform the duties associated with their visit.
  6. This permit must be carried at all times while the holder is on the Lands and produced for inspection on demand.
  7. The permit may be revoked at any time.
  8. In the event of a valid permit being revoked for any reason, the permit holder shall immediately leave the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Lands.
  9. Executive members, Community Councillors and Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara staff may inspect permits and may at any time give direction to permit holders in relation to their conduct and activities on the Lands.
  10. Any special conditions for the Permit Holder are noted on the Permit.
  11. The vehicle sticker must be displayed on the windscreen of your vehicle while the holder is on the Lands.
  12. The body of the form is for the permit holder’s information only.
  13. Any Visitors, Agency staff, Employee or Contractor working on the APY lands requires a National Police Clearance certificate.
  14. All artworks purchased by the permit holder must be declared and accompanied by the appropriate sales documentation from the relevant community art centre. Except in the case of approved galleries, the permit holder shall not deal privately in the works of Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara artists.
  15. No work or consultations will be undertaken unless first approved in writing by the APY Executive Board or its delegate.
  16. No premises will be negotiated for, occupied or used without a lease or licence arrangement approved by the APY Executive Board.
  17. You will co-operate with and answer questions asked by any investigator appointed by APY.
  18. Holders of permits shall not: i) make representations about the nature and extent of Anangu legal rights under the APY Land Rights Act; ii) the powers and functions of APY ownership of the lands by APY; and/ or, iii) APY’s entitlement to exclusive possession of the Lands and buildings erected on the Lands and/or APY’s entitlement to collect the rents and profits from the Lands or buildings erected thereon; iv) occupy buildings or other areas without the consent of APY; or, v) collect rents for buildings or lands or other money from Anangu or communities without the written consent of APY.
  19. In addition to these, the following also applies: i) Permit Holder is not to engage in any private commercial activities ii) Permit Holder is not to remove any flora, fauna, or rocks iii) Permit Holder is not to leave established roads without the express consent of the appropriate Traditional Owner or their representative iv) Permit Holder is to check at all times with local authorities or Traditional Owners regarding the taking of photographs or making of videos.

Safe Driving on the APY Lands


Community Safety Notice - Drivers Beware!!


The roads on the APY Lands are in significant need of urgent maintenance. There are many washouts, corrugations, dips, etc.


There are a large number of feral animals including donkeys and camels that wander the Lands. Their numbers seem to increase in the hot and dry times of the year (October - February) when they are looking for water.





Drivers are advised to take extreme precaution when driving on the APY Lands.

Read the APY 4WD Safe Driving Tips

  pdf 4WD Vehicle Safety (36 KB)

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