Voice: the change we must all be part of

Speaking at the Garma Festival, Prime Minister Albanese put forward a possible referendum question: “Do you support an alteration to the Constitution that establishes an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice?”  

Reconciliation Australia believes the country is ready to take this positive step forward.

This kind of progress on reconciliation is what will bond our country together and set the foundation for a more just and equitable nation.

Much work has been done to get us to this point. 

The Uluru Statement from the Heart was presented to the nation five years ago and calls for, “… the establishment of a First Nations Voice enshrined in the Constitution and a Makarrata Commission to supervise a process of agreement-making and truth-telling about our history.” 

In the five years since the release of the Uluru Statement from the Heart, a Joint Select Committee has considered the proposal.

An Indigenous Voice Co-design process outlined, in detail, options for how a Voice could work.  

Further work will continue in partnership with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people about what will go forward and ultimately the Australian people will be asked to support an Indigenous Voice to Parliament being enshrined in our Constitution

Be Brave. Make Change.

Reconciliation Australia’s work consistently shows the public is on board when it comes to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people having a say, and that we want governments to step up too. 

The Australian Reconciliation Barometer –  our two-yearly annual survey on attitudes to reconciliation – showed  95% of Australians believe it is important for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to have a say in matters that affect them

It showed 81% of Australians believe it is important to protect an Indigenous Body within the Constitution, so any government can’t remove it. 

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people can no longer see their right to have a say, their right to be heard at the highest levels of law in this country, continue to be a political football tossed between successive governments.  

The time is now. It’s up to us to act

Get up to speed with the information at hand and start talking now with friends and family. 

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.

Skip to content
Copy link
Powered by Social Snap