As allies, we know that when it comes to First Nations justice, it is First Nations communities who have the solutions and know what their communities need. We know that this moment is especially hard for First Nations communities and campaigners who disproportionately voted “Yes” for this change and who have championed a Voice to Parliament over the last months.
In a statement to the Australian public, First Nations leaders said, “we have faith that the upswelling of support through this Referendum has ignited a fire for many to walk with us on our journey towards justice”.
In the wake of the referendum results, Plan International Australia reaffirms our commitment to walk with First Nations communities.
Every day, we stand up for children and young people to have their voice heard on matters that affect them. We do this because it is every child’s right, and because we know it is the only way to create real, lasting change.
Here at home, First Nations children deserve better than to be over-represented in poor health and incarceration statistics – and First Nations people have the solutions. As the Uluru Statement from the Heart says, ‘When we have power over our destiny, our children will flourish’.
The Voice was just one potential mechanism for change. This referendum was always situated within a bigger movement for justice – including truth-telling and treaties, as outlined in the Uluru Statement. Now, it’s up to all of us to stand firm with First Nations in their ongoing fight for justice.