Reconciliation movement united in support for Voice

Australia’s peak reconciliation organisations have reaffirmed their strong support for the Uluru Statement from the Heart and a constitutionally enshrined Voice to Parliament.

In an announcement released today, the Australian Reconciliation Network (ARN), comprised of reconciliation bodies from across the country at a national, state and territory level, urged supporters of reconciliation to join in the Voice Week of Action 18 – 24 February.

“We encourage all Australians to show support and find out more during the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice Week of Action and to have conversations with friends and family, and show support as the Yes Campaign launches,” the announcement read.

Reconciliation Australian Chief Executive, Karen Mundine, said constitutional recognition and a greater say for First Nations peoples has been a central pillar of the reconciliation movement for decades.

“In 2000 our predecessor, the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation presented its final report in which it called for a referendum for constitutional recognition, and stressed the critical importance of a greater First Nations voice in decisions that impact us,” said Ms Mundine.

“More than 20 years later the reconciliation movement is just as certain and just as passionate that these outcomes are central to Australia’s journey of reconciliation.

This announcement is a clear expression of support for the three main actions in the Uluru Statement from the Heart; Voice, Treaty and Truth-telling and urges Australians to support the ‘Yes’ campaign.and to join in the coming week of action,” she said.

The ARN described the Uluru Statement from the Heart as ‘generous in its invitation to the Australian people’ and that it presented clear arguments for reforming the Australian Constitution.

“This year, we have the opportunity to make history, and answer that invitation at a referendum,” the announcement read.

Last week Reconciliation Australia announced the theme for National Reconciliation Week is, ‘Be a Voice for Generations.”

The theme calls on Australians to honour the work of generations past who fought for justice in Australia and to work together today to tackle the unfinished business of reconciliation, including the Voice to Parliament, for the generations to come.

Read the full statement from the Australian Reconciliation Network. 

The Australian Reconciliation Network is comprised of peak reconciliation bodies from across the country at a national, state and territory level: Reconciliation WA, Reconciliation Qld, Reconciliation NSW, ACT Reconciliation Council, Reconciliation Victoria, Reconciliation Tasmanaia, Reconciliation SA, and Reconciliation Australia.

See more info on Voice to Parliament.

Paul House with gum leaves and smoke
Paul Girrawah House

Paul Girrawah House has multiple First Nation ancestries from the South-East Canberra region, including the Ngambri-Ngurmal (Walgalu), Pajong (Gundungurra), Wallabollooa (Ngunnawal) and Erambie/Brungle (Wiradyuri) family groups.

Paul acknowledges his diverse First Nation history, he particularly identifies as a descendant of Onyong aka Jindoomang from Weereewaa (Lake George) and Henry ‘Black Harry’ Williams from Namadgi who were both multilingual, essentially Walgalu-Ngunnawal-Wiradjuri speaking warriors and Ngunnawal–Wallaballooa man William Lane aka ‘Billy the Bull’ - Murrjinille.

Paul was born at the old Canberra hospital in the centre of his ancestral country and strongly acknowledges his First Nation matriarch ancestors, in particular his mother Dr Aunty Matilda House-Williams and grandmother, Ms Pearl Simpson-Wedge.

Paul completed a Bachelor of Community Management from Macquarie University, and Graduate Certificate in Wiradjuri Language, Culture and Heritage and Management from CSU.

Paul provided the Welcome to Country for the 47th Opening of Federal Parliament in 2022. Paul is Board Director, Ngambri Local Aboriginal Land Council, Member Indigenous Reference Group, National Museum of Australia and Australian Government Voice Referendum Engagement Group.  

Paul works on country with the ANU, First Nations Portfolio as a Senior Community Engagement Officer

Acknowledgement of Country

Reconciliation Australia acknowledges Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing  connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures; and to Elders past and present. 

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples should be aware that this website contains images or names of people who have passed away.

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