Dear Co-Design Body
Submission to Co-design process
I worked in a cross-cultural music exchange program with the Pitjantjatjara at Indulkana and Mimili for 22 years I speak Pitjantjatjara as a second language and am a member of the Nyinyi (Zebra FInch) totemic group. I did postgraduate work on Aboriginal music for 6 years under Dr Catherine Ellis, Dept Ethnomusicology Uni. of Adelaide. I now live in Mullumbimby, but was brought up in Adelaide.
Why do you think the Uluru Statement from the Heart is important?
Nothing could be simpler. Europeans from 1770 failed to recognise the equality of the people who lived on Australian soil and disposessed them of their means of livelihood with animals which grazed their pastures, murder with guns and poison, and missions which forbade their songs and language etcetera almost adinfinitum. This can only be redressed by completely sharing the land and fruit of the earth with those people, and protecting the rights of these people in parliamentary representation, in constitution, and a complete retelling of the history of dispossession to every Australian by all the means available to us. While this involves a lot more than what we are requesting, this is the correct place to start and all control of the process must be in Aboriginal hands. The public purse must provide the funds necessary.
Why is it important for Indigenous people to have a say in the matters that affect them?
What a stupid question!
Why do you think it's important to enshrine the Voice to Parliament in the Constitution, rather than include it only in legislation?
Legislation can be and is often changed by corrupt politicians obeying their business buddies or their own greed. There is no reason to trust only to legislation.
How could a Voice to Parliament improve the lives of your community?
It is a first step for those in power in this country to relinquish some of that power in favour of human decency. The next step is to promulgate the ideal of a society in which we are all equal, starting with a true and corrected history and moving on to equality in housing, land ownership, education, police treatment.....