The Process

How will it work?

Three groups are working together to develop options and models for an Indigenous voice:

The National Co-design Group and Local & Regional Co-design Group are looking at ways to create local, regional and national elements of an Indigenous voice.

They started by looking at what is already in place and working well around the country. They are also looking at past and international examples.

Together the groups will determine how local and regional voices might link to a national voice.

The Senior Advisory Group is guiding the overall process. The group is providing advice through the development stage, and will review the options and models developed by the Local & Regional and National co-design groups.

Once options and models for an Indigenous voice are developed, all three groups will provide recommendations to the Australian Government.

The government will decide which models and options will go forward to the community for feedback.

Then, community consultation will begin and you’ll be able to have your say. This will take place with Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians in urban, regional and remote locations across Australia.

Indigenous voice options will be refined based on the feedback.

The refined options will go back to government for consideration.

We will need your feedback on what will work best when community consultation starts. Find out more.

Why do we need a voice?

We want to make sure the ideas and views of Indigenous Australians are heard in the development of policy and decision-making that affect them.

Co-designing an Indigenous voice means that any options or models considered will be developed in partnership with Indigenous Australians, the government and broader Australia.

Greater say and a stronger relationship with Indigenous Australians benefits all Australians. For programs, policies and decisions that impact Indigenous Australians to be truly reflective of all Australia, Indigenous voices must be heard and included.

As a result we will benefit from better decisions, programs and policies that reflect a broader, richer and more diverse Australia.

How did we get here?

There have been calls for an Indigenous voice over many decades.

The Social Justice Commissioner specifically called for a voice in the Human Rights Commission’s Social Justice Reports published in 2006, 2008 and 2009 and the Cape York Institute did the same in 2012 and 2015.

More recently, in 2017 the Uluru Statement from the Heart and the Referendum Council called for the establishment of a First Nations Voice enshrined in the Australian Constitution.

In 2018 the Joint Select Committee on Constitutional Recognition relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples recommended the Australian Government initiate a process of co-design to develop detail for an Indigenous voice.

On 30 October 2019, the Minister for Indigenous Affairs, the Hon Ken Wyatt AM MP, announced the Indigenous voice co-design process, established to develop models to enhance local and regional decision-making and provide a voice for Indigenous Australians to government.