Avenues for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to influence the very matters that directly affect their lives should have long been a given. There is clearly substantial work to be done by all of us that live, work and celebrate on unceded Aboriginal land, if our legacy is to be a more inclusive, equitable and just society.
We must persist in exploring ways for multicultural communities to unite with First Nations communities and embark on the healing journey the best way we know how, through creativity and connection. We must make space for deeper listening, learning, and building solidarity with our First Nations peers, community members and leaders.
We must courageously undertake the journey of examining our own relationships to history, culture, power and place and to the barriers that prevent honest recounting of Australia's history. It is our duty to advocate for Treaty, and demonstrate care and respect for the knowledge and practices of the world’s oldest continuing culture, the same practices that enrich our lives every day.
In acknowledgment of the outcome of establishing an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice to Parliament in Australia, MAV wishes to reaffirm our unwavering commitment to change, so this referendum's result may signify not a foregone conclusion but a defining moment.