Hepatitis SA accepts the invitation of the Uluru Statement from the Heart and welcomes the announcement of the 2023 Referendum on an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice.
We acknowledge this Land was never ceded, that it always was, and always will be, Aboriginal Land.
Hepatitis SA supports the establishment of an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice to Parliament in the Australian Constitution. A constitutionally enshrined Voice to Parliament will give Aboriginal and Torres Strait people a say on issues that affect their lives.
Hepatitis SA Chief Executive Officer, Kerry Paterson, said the trauma of colonisation and racist government policies over generations have resulted in excessive socio-economic disadvantage for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are over-represented in the communities we serve including those in the criminal justice system, drug and alcohol services and those affected by viral hepatitis,” she said. “Decades of effort by governments to address the disparity has not closed the gap.
“The Voice to Parliament is a proposal from the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people themselves.
“We believe it is not controversial for governments to inform their decision-making by listening to experts. The experts on issues affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait communities are leaders of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
“A constitutionally protected Voice to Parliament provides a permanent channel of advice to government through which Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people can have real input into decisions affecting their communities.
“We urge our members to make an informed choice in the Referendum on 14 October.
“If you don’t know, find out.”
4 September 2023
Find out more
- https://voice.gov.au (also available in other languages)
Authorised by K Paterson, Hepatitis SA, 3 Hackney Road, Hackney SA 5069