Minister for Indigenous Australians, Linda Burney, received a standing ovation following
her NAIDOC Week address at the National Press Club in Canberra. In her speech, she
explained the fundamental purpose of the Voice to Parliament, which is “recognition” and
the delivery of “practical outcomes” for First Nation Australians.
Minister Burney took the opportunity to highlight the devastating statistics on indigenous
disadvantage. She spoke passionately about the disproportionate incidence of serious
health conditions, rates of incarceration and suicide, and the damage inflicted by the
ongoing removal of indigenous children from their families.
Ms Burney declared that governments have historically made policies for, not with,
Indigenous Australians, emphasising the need for a new perspective to address old
challenges. The Minister identified Health, Education, Jobs, and Housing as the key areas
for Voice representatives to advise Parliament.
Expressing optimism, Ms Burney highlighted the extensive support for the “YES” campaign
from faith groups, businesses, trade unions, sporting bodies, and civil society.
She concluded her speech by stating that the upcoming Referendum was the Australian
people’s decision, expressing confidence in a successful outcome.
CSSA Executive Director, Monique Earsman, who attended the address, said “CSSA stands
with the Catholic community and other faith-based peak bodies in supporting a YES vote
to enshrine an Indigenous Voice to Parliament.”
A YES vote will be a step towards a better and more just society where genuine
reconciliation becomes possible.”
CSSA members and the public are reminded that if you would like to get involved in
supporting the YES campaign more information is available here: Yes 23