Referendum Council a welcome step forward
Reconciliation Australia welcomes today’s announcement from the Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition on the establishment of the Referendum Council on constitutional recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Reconciliation Australia Chief Executive Officer Mr Justin Mohamed said the establishment of the Referendum Council is a critical step toward further national conversations, including an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander-led consultation process.
“To create meaningful and substantive change, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples must shape the process for constitutional recognition, as well as the final proposal put to the Australian public,” Mr Mohamed said.
The Referendum Council, which includes former members of the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation and the Reconciliation Australia Board, will also play a key role in maintaining the momentum required for the referendum.
“Reconciliation Australia is confident the Referendum Council will guide the national conversation and momentum towards a successful referendum to meaningfully recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the Australian Constitution,” Mr Mohamed said.
“Constitutional recognition is a long-sought milestone on Australia’s reconciliation journey. We now have an historic opportunity to fix the exclusion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples from the nation’s founding document and to create unifying moment for the nation.
“We cannot afford for the process to stall; we must now determine a detailed timeframe for community consultations to take place.”