Responding to Indigenous Affairs Minister Ken Wyatt’s address at the National Press Club today, Oxfam Australia Chief Executive Dr Helen Szoke said:
“Oxfam Australia warmly welcomes the Minister’s leadership in committing to developing a consensus position for a referendum on Constitutional recognition of Australia’s First Peoples within this term of government and we look forward to seeing multi-party support for this process.
“We know that many of Australia’s First Peoples want the Government to develop an ambitious proposal rather than a minimalist one that only addresses recognition. A deep and genuine commitment will be an important step in our national history.
“We welcome the Minister’s approach of co-design and his commitment to consult broadly, within Parliament and around Australia. The consensus option should respect and reflect the historic Uluru Statement from the Heart and its call for a Voice to the National Parliament, with a process of agreement.
“Oxfam Australia believes the Federal Government has a vital role to play in supporting and encouraging treaty processes to emerge and come to fulfilment. These agreements should not be left only to the States and Territories.”