Taking action for the Voice
Four ways you can support a Yes vote in the Referendum
August 16, 2023
In the Meanjin oration delivered on Monday night, Indigenous leader Noel Pearson spoke about the long and arduous pathway toward recognition for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples that has led to the referendum. But at this critical point in the journey, Pearson says what is needed now is ‘radical hope’.
He spoke about the radical hope that is contained within the Uluru Statement for the Heart and the proposal for constitutional recognition through a Voice. Hope that calls for action.
If you are looking for ways to make a difference as we move closer toward the referendum, here’s four things you can do right now.
- Become a local volunteer with Yes23 – Join others who believe in a future where Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders play a crucial role in shaping laws that affect them by signing up to volunteer with the Yes movement. Now is a critical time for conversations on the ground, providing clear, factual information for people as they consider their vote. Local groups of volunteers are handing out fliers at trains stations and shops, door knocking, making phone calls, letter box dropping, attending local events and having conversations in their community. Volunteer in your community or find a Local Yes group in your area.
- Sign on to the Women for Yes Open Letter – Women For Yes is a women-led campaign in support of an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice to Parliament, created by Together, Yes with Yes 23. The Uniting Church Synod of Victoria and Tasmania is a campaign partner. On Sunday 13 August, Women for Yes issued an Open Letter to the Australian People, stating reasons for voting yes. In part, it reads,
“The Uluru Statement From The Heart graciously invites us to walk with Indigenous Australians toward a better future for all. We ache to do so. We take pride in what Australian women have achieved in terms of civic action and nation-building. But we can do so much more.”
Everyone is invited to sign the letter. Add your name!
- Have conversations with the people around you! One of the most impactful things you can do is speak to people around you who are still undecided about how they will vote. This might be people in your congregation, workplace, family, neighbours, parents at the school gate, sporting teammates or others in your community. There is excellent information available to help you feel confident about having these conversations. Read the excellent booklet produced by Empowered Communities Information for Conversations or the Yes 23 Conversation Guide. For information from the Uniting Church, including a 2-page flyer and PowerPoint presentation, go to https://uniting.church/voice/
- Display a banner at your Church. Show your support by displaying at banner at your church. There is artwork here that you can organise to be printed - https://uniting.church/display-a-voice-banner/. You can also individually show your support with stickers, T-shirts, badges and other materials available from the Yes23 shop.
Watch the address delivered by Mary Crooks, Executive Director, Victorian Women’s Trust; and Project Director, Together Yes at the Women for Yes event.
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