Para Hills SA 5096
To whom it may concern
Co-design process: Submission for Cath Lappin
My name is Cath Lappin and I am passionate about ensuring our nation stands up and owns its past. I am an Art Therapist who works specifically with children and young people, adults and families who have lived experience of trauma. I work for and co-own Connected Self a company that provides therapeutic supports to children, young people and their families including psychology, creative interventions, consulting, training and more. We are one of the leading providers of Trauma Aware training in South Australia and across Australia. We work closely with schools, child protection and not for profit organisations. I know first hand the impact of intergenerational and complex trauma. I know what can make a difference to people who are working towards healing. I believe in the capacity of us as humans to experience real healing and be able to grow and be our whole selves. I am passionate about our First Nations people having agency in their own lives and to have their connection to land held as a sacred and special part of what it means to be First Nations peoples.
Why do you think the Uluru Statement from the Heart is important?
Uluru Statement from the Heart is important because First Nations people have been seeking to be heard since the arrival of the first fleet. There have been so many times in our history that our First Nations reached out to be heard. There were petitions collected in the 1800's that have been 'lost'. All across our history there has been attempts by First Nation people and their supporters to be acknowledged, heard and a call for for real change to occur. The Uluru Statement is the culmination of all of this time and effort and is a clear and powerful voice calling for a change that will be protected by our constitiution going forward so that this clear strong voice won't get 'lost' or dismissed.
Why is it important for Indigenous people to have a say in the matters that affect them?
Indigenous people have been disempowered and dispossessed. They have been robbed of their birth right and their connections to country, community, elders and ancestors. The impact of colonisation has meant that there have been laws that have actively discriminated against First Nations people. Basic human rights of being able to speak their own languages, be connected to community, land and knowing where they came from and who they are have been taken from them. It is time for Indigenous Australians to have agency in their lives. To have authority in what they know about themselves and their country and community. It is time to heal.
Why do you think it's important to enshrine the Voice to Parliament in the Constitution, rather than include it only in legislation?
First Generations voice needs to be protected by the constitution so that it is not about creating a law but upholding a principle. That we hold this as valued and important as a country.
How could a Voice to Parliament improve the lives of your community?
A voice to Parliament means that we recognise our past and are ready to move forward and offer peace and healing. To ensure that First Nations people are valued and seen as so important to our country and community going forward. To enable Indigenous Australians a new experience in their own country where they are seen as integral to The Australian way of life and living. To enable opportunities for next generations of First Nations people to thrive. We need this for indigenous nation building so that systems and power structures can be adapted to meet a First Nations perspective.
Time to listen deeply - Dadirri has much to teach us!