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Australian Prime Minister outlines draft vote on recognition of Indigenous people

#Australian #Prime #Minister #outlines #draft #vote #recognition #Indigenous #people

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese on Saturday outlined a draft referendum question to amend the constitution and establish a representative Indigenous body in Parliament.

Australia’s constitution currently does not recognize tribal peoples, and the move to enshrine a so-called “Voice” — an advisory body that advises the government on decisions that would affect the marginalized — in the document would require a nationwide referendum.

Speaking at an Indigenous festival in Arnhem Land – home to a majority Indigenous population – center-left leader Albanese proposed to the Australian public a draft referendum question: “Support an amendment to the constitution that would include an Aboriginal and an Indigenous Islander.” Torres Strait established? Voice?”

Albanese – elected in May – had promised to hold a referendum before the end of his term in 2025.

It remains unclear what form the referendum will take, but proposing the draft question to Australian Indigenous leaders and the public would be a first step.

He also recommitted Saturday to the “Uluru Declaration from the Heart,” which called for enhanced rights and constitutional recognition for Australia’s indigenous people.

The 2017 declaration was rejected by the Conservative government of then Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

But Albanese said the Uluru Declaration is about “consulting with indigenous peoples and Torres Strait Islanders on the decisions that affect them, no more, no less”.

“That’s simple courtesy. It’s common decency,” he added.

“It recognizes the centuries of failure… the failure to ask the most basic human question: How would I feel if this were done to me?”

Australia has long failed to close the gap between the health and well-being of its First Nations and the rest of the population, with rising incarceration rates among Indigenous peoples and life expectancy some eight years below the national average.

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#Australian #Prime #Minister #outlines #draft #vote #recognition #Indigenous #people

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