I'm asking the government of Australia to honour the commitment to a referendum to enshrine our desire for Australian unity through an Indigenous voice to parliament in the Australian constitution.
You may wonder, why does the voice to parliament need to be in the constitution, why not just continue with implementing legislation that parliament of the day can vote on?
In Australia, there have been various incarnations of a voice to parliament the past. The issue is that previously, this was implemented in legislation, legislation which has not survived political change over the last 30 odd years. This intermittency and transience makes it utterly impossible to deal with the major intergenerational issues that are faced by Indigenous Australians, such as greater incarceration rates, life expectancy and child mortality.
Constitutional enshrinement via referendum is sorely needed - to ensure ongoing representation and will allow for legislation on top of that certainty of being in the constitution. This legislation is then ready to be refined and developed by parliament to ensure it remains current throughout the decades to come.
The model for the Voice in the Uluru Statement, must broaden the inputs that drive what is heard. We need to ensure that wide and diverse representation of local indigenous people are included in the Voice. Diversity should cover spectrums of physical ability, gender and sexual orientation as well geographical and cultural backgrounds.