To Co-Design Body
Co-design process: Submission for PETER NICKELL
I am from Hampshire in England and first moved to Australia in 2014 and have spent
most of my time since then here. I have lived in Sydney mostly but have also lived in
Melbourne and worked rurally. I have hitch hiked 1500 miles around Australia and love
the country - especially its Indigenous culture. I was only able to travel through country
because of the generosity of all Australians I met - Indigenous and non-Indigenous alike.
I now work in childcare in the Inner-West of Sydney and love my neighborhood and am
grateful to the Wangal and Gadigal clans of the Eora nation - the land where I live, work,
rest and roam. Indigenous peoples' tell us that land is sacred - something that I am
gratefully taught to remember.
Why do you think the Uluru Statement from the Heart is important?
The Uluru Statement from the Heart is Indigenous leadership in this country seeking to
recognise one another and seeking the rightful recognition of settler peoples
acknowledgement of Indigenous land and sovereignty. It seems to me a most
reasonable, appropriate and necessary request at this point in time for wider Australian
society and civic institutions to listen and uplift the Indigenous voices' of this country and
allow them to take their rightful place at the heart of the conversation.
How could a Voice to Parliament improve the lives of your community?
An Indigenous voice in parliament would connect communities with culture, ensuring an
empathetic voice of leadership encouraging good public policy and engagement with the
wider community - enshrined within the nations Constitution.
Why is it important for Indigenous people to have a say in the matters that affect them?
It seems baffling to not allow Indigenous peoples' a say in the matters that affect them.
To disallow Indigenous people a voice in the matters that affect them is arrogant, cruel
Why do you think it's important to enshrine the Voice to Parliament in the Constitution,
rather than include it only in legislation?
It is a question of who holds the power within the Constitution and to what purpose.
Without Indigenous consultation, without the framework for a listening culture within
Parliament itself, it is hard to see how Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians alike
could benefit from the wisdom and custodianship of Indigenous people. We need this
conversation to continue and for non-Indigenous people to listen with care and intention.
The Uluru Statement from the Heart is an offering. It is an opening up and a
communication. A desire for a greater future - one of deeper connection and love for
country. It is a emblem of peace and an indicator of what we can achieve if we listen and
want to work together - in recognition and of the inspiration of Indigenous leadership in