Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2022 Week 11 Hansard (Wednesday, 23 November 2022) . . Page.. 3738 ..
about why this should be struck out or is inappropriate or does not serve the interests of the local First Nations community; yet Ms Kikkert has seen fit to remove this element.
Then there is 3(a)(ii): options to build grassroots momentum for all of the Uluru Statement from the Heart. Even this was too far for Ms Kikkert and has been struck out as well. I wonder how the local First Nations community, acknowledging that they are not a homogenous group and have many different perspectives on the Uluru Statement from the Heart, would feel about Mrs Kikkert not supporting all of these statements in support of the Uluru Statement from the Heart.
Therefore, the Greens will not be supporting the amendment. We stand in support of Dr Paterson’s original motion, and we stand in support of the Uluru Statement from the Heart in full—voice, treaty and truth.
MR PETTERSSON (Yerrabi) (5.08): I rise today to speak in support of the Uluru Statement from the Heart, to endorse the voice to parliament referendum and urge the ACT government to step up in this pivotal moment.
We meet today on the land of the Ngunnawal people, who have lived in and served as caretakers of this land for over 20,000 years. I would like to pay my respects to their ongoing spiritual and cultural connection to this land. I would also like to acknowledge that this land was stolen and sovereignty was not ceded. It always was, always will be, Aboriginal land.
I believe there is a glaring oversight in our nation’s foundational document. When our country’s Constitution was first drafted, First Nations people were excluded. The proud people who have called this land home for over 60,000 years were completely excluded from the system of government that the British colonisers now imposed. This is a dark stain on our nation’s history. It is time for us to right this wrong, and the way we can start is by establishing a voice to parliament enshrining a First Nations voice in the Australian Constitution.
A voice to parliament is an opportunity for First Nations people to tell their story, our history from their point of view, and speak their truth about the decisions of our federal parliament, which have such profound impacts on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
When the Uluru Statement from the Heart was developed in May 2017, 250 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander delegates from 13 regional areas put their signatures on a historic petition. Delegates called for two things in particular: (1) the establishment of a First Nations voice to be enshrined in the Constitution; and (2) a Makarrata commission to supervise the process of agreement-making between governments and First Nations. I believe these are humble and gracious requests in the face of hundreds of years of discrimination and violence, and I support them wholeheartedly.
The latest Closing the Gap report shows that there is still much work to be done to break down barriers that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people face. Indigenous child mortality is double that of non-Indigenous children. School attendance and