Australians will be asked later this year to vote for the inclusion in the Australian constitution of a clause recognising Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders as First Peoples, and establishing a representative body that can advise parliament and the executive arm of government on issues of importance to indigenous people.
The Voice and recognition are both landmark issues for the country. IVP supports both, and urges all Australians to give consideration to voting Yes, to these straightforward changes.
Because the constitution is not front of mind; indeed these changes will be of immediate interest only within the legal community; does not mean that these proposed changes are not important, and positively affecting how we see ourselves, and how the world sees us. The format of the change came from indigenous people themselves; it is modest in conception but profound in its resetting of how Australians share the continent, within its deep history of human occupation, and its recent reconstitution as an extension of British nation building.
The Voice will place indigenous lives at the heart of Australia’s governance, not at its fringes. It represents a stage in our growth, bringing the majority with their origins in other continents and those who can claim those with origins in the thousands of years of Australia’s pre settlement history on a common footing. In this respect it is a step to bettering the lives of indigenous and non indigenous alike, respecting the just claims to equity within the larger Australian polity.
International Volunteers for Peace.