As part of the Branch’s commitment to developing a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP), staff attended an online conversation during National Reconciliation Week (27 May to 3 June every year) in which Arrernte and Kalkadoon activist Rachel Perkins spoke insightfully about the upcoming Voice to Parliament referendum.
Ms Perkins is a director and co-chair of Yes23, the campaign led by Australian for Indigenous Constitutional Recognition. She is the daughter of noted Aboriginal activist Charlie Perkins, who played an instrumental role in the yes campaign during the 1967 referendum.
The session offered in plain-English an informative, easy-to-understand background about the Voice, what it means – and, significantly, what it doesn’t mean.
Attending this session was part of ongoing Branch training about the issues. Over the coming months, we will provide members with more detailed information to help answer questions you may have before you vote.
First up, in this month’s Ask Maddy column we have an FAQ responding to common concerns about the Voice prepared by the Australian National University’s First Nations Portfolio.
This issue of On the Record reaches your inboxes in the middle of national NAIDOC Week. This is a week of celebrations held across Australia in the first week of July each year (Sunday to Sunday), to celebrate and recognise the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
NAIDOC Week is an opportunity for all Australians to learn about First Nations cultures and histories and participate in celebrations of the oldest, continuous living cultures on earth.
This morning, as part of NAIDOC Week, members of the ANMF (Vic Branch) Reconciliation Action Plan working group attended a breakfast panel featuring Wonnarua and Yuin woman Madison Howarth joined on stage by N’Arwee’t Professor Carolyn Briggs AM, managing director of BlackCard Mundanara Bayles, CEO & Co-Founder of Clothing The Gaps Laura Thompson and Jacqui Wandin of the Wandoon Estate Aboriginal Corporation, who shared knowledge of First Nations women who came before, and continue their legacy of fighting for fairness and recognition.
The 2023 NAIDOC Week theme is ‘For Our Elders’ and celebrates the important role and a prominent place that Elders play in First Nations communities and families. Elders are cultural knowledge holders, trailblazers, nurturers, advocates, teachers, survivors, leaders, hard workers and loved ones.
ANMF encourages members to visit naidoc.org.au to learn more.