What is ‘recognition’?
Debates around ‘recognition’ of indigenous Australians have come to focus around three issues:
- Outdated terms used in section 25 (disqualification from voting on racial grounds) and section 51(xxvi) “the races power” of the Australian Constitution, and which it is argued ought to be removed from the Constitution;
- Adoption of symbolic language that properly acknowledges the experience and enduring significance of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples for the nation;
- The need for indigenous Australians to ensure that their voice is heard in indigenous policy-making, so that past injustices are not repeated.
We believe that it is important to remove outdated terms from the Constitution, and to develop a means of ensuring that indigenous voices are heard in the processes of Parliament.
We also believe that it is possible to adopt a poetic and inspiring symbolic statement without changing the Constitution.
- To read about our proposal for the symbolic aspects of recognition, click here;
- To read about proposals for removing the concept of race from the Constitution and reforming the legislative process, click here.