The Uluru Statement from the Heart provides a picture of the change needed to build a better future for both Indigenous people and the Nation. It calls for three fundamental changes: Voice, Treaty, Truth.
The first reform is the constitutional enshrinement of a First Nations Voice (Voice). The Voice will empower Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples politically. It will be a permanent institution for expressing First Nations’ views to the parliament and government on important policy decisions affecting their rights.
The Uluru Statement from the Heart also calls for the constitutionally enshrined First Nations Voice to be supported by a Makarrata Commission to supervise a process for both agreement making between governments and First Nations (Treaty), and historical truth-telling (Truth).
In October 2017, the Government rejected the recommendation to establish an Indigenous Voice to Parliament. In 2019, the Government established the Indigenous Voice Co-Design process. They provided a final report in 2021.
In 2022 the incoming Labour Government took up the call of the Uluru Statement and committed to hold a referendum in establishing an Indigenous Voice to Parliament enshrined in the constitution.
The Uluru Statement from the Heart provides the nation with an opportunity to embrace our history, to acknowledge the wrongs of the past, and to take practical and significant steps to ensure that these wrongs are never again repeated. Australia has been out of step for too long. When we compare our context to settler-colonial nations like New Zealand, Canada, the US, we sit far behind, and this is the opportunity to put it right.
The Edmund Rice Centre for Justice and Community Education strongly endorses a "Yes" vote on this historic referendum.
We have produced resources to raise awareness, and encourage action in response to the Uluru Statement from the Heart, and the call to Voice, Treaty, Truth.
Click the following links to download the resources:
A resource to assist with reading and reflecting on the Uluru Statement From the Heart.
Designed to take people on a journey in the weeks between Easter and Pentecost, Voice Crying in the Wilderness includes scripture, prayer, and discussion questions for individuals or groups to engage with the significance of the Uluru Statement and our response to it.
The processes here can lead to clarity and wisdom, and enable people to face the future with integrity.
Some useful websites are