The Leader of the Opposition Anthony Albanese is at Uluru this week, pushing to make our people part of this country’s colonial constitution through a referendum.

But every single day, 250 years after the colonisers came to this place, I see that our people are still suffering.

Every day I’m talking and meeting with community, with family, and with mob, and every day they tell me the same thing — this country is not equal.

Even after more than 250 years, we’re still being denied the respect and the equality that our people deserve. For too long, our voices have been silenced and sidelined and written out of the story of this country.

If Black Lives Matter, then we need to start with telling the truth. We need to take major steps towards a Treaty — not just change the colonisers’ constitution.

We can’t make Black Lives Matter through a few word changes in a constitution that doesn’t speak for our people — that’s what Labor wants.

We need to think bigger than that. That’s why we need a Treaty. That’s what the Greens are pushing for.

A Treaty, or Treaties, would make clear that we, the First Nations Peoples of these Lands, deserve to have our rights, our knowledge, and our Sovereignty respected.

Our people should decide for themselves if Treaty is what their people want. That’s what real self-determination looks like — not just big corporations and the Australian Labor Party deciding that they want to change the colonisers’ constitution.

White Australia has a Blak history. When the colonisers invaded, there was a war on these lands — a war that hasn’t ended.

When we have truth and Treaty, we’ll finally have peace for our people, and we can bring this country together and heal our nation.

By Lidia Thorpe

 

Lidia Thorpe is a proud Djabwurrung, Gunnai, Gunditjmara woman and an Australian Greens Senator for Victoria.