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Uluru Dialogue welcomes Voice amendment wording and referendum question

Emma Ruben -

The Uluru Dialogue have welcomed the confirmation of the constitutional amendment, principles and question which will be put to Australian people through a referendum this year.

Regarding the Voice to Parliament, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese revealed last week the wording of the question to be put to the public in the upcoming referendum.

The wording of the question reads:

"A proposed law: To alter the Constitution to recognise the First Peoples of Australia by establishing an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice. Do you approve this proposed alteration?"

Cobble Cobble woman, Balnaves chair in Constitutional Law at UNSW and Uluru Dialogue co-chair Professor Megan Davis said she hopes the emergence of wording and the question, brings a more united Australia.

"Today is a major milestone on the road to a First Nations Voice, a more united Australia and better outcomes for our people," Professor Davis said on Thursday.

"The Federal Government has accepted the recommendations of the Referendum Working Group who unanimously supported the wording and the design principles that will shape the First Nations Voice.

"Now we have some clarity on the question and words that will be in the Constitution, the Australian people can get a better understanding of what they will be voting on later this year."

Mr Albanese also provided detail on the addition to the Australian constitution.

The Voice stemmed from vigorous advocacy carried out by members of the Uluru Dialogue which resulted in the creation of the Uluru Statement from the Hear in 2017.

Uluru Dialogue co-chair Pat Anderson said now the Australian people have something to "get behind".

"The Referendum Working Group has worked extremely hard to reach this consensus. This process was going to take time and I am glad we have a result that will create substantive change for First Peoples," she said.

"We knew the amendment needed to reflect what the First Nations men and women told us at the Regional Dialogues that led to the Uluru Statement and we haven't stopped working to ensure this became a reality.

"We invite the rest of Parliament now to recognise all the work by First Nations Peoples that has preceded the announcement today and support the change to the Constitution."

Mr Albanese confirmed a joint parliamentary committee will also be established to consider the wording of the referendum question and receive submissions before a parliamentary vote will be held on the final wording in June.


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