QCC Supports First Nations Voice to Parliament
We are excited to share with you that as an organisation, the Queensland Conservation Council has decided to endorse a ‘YES' vote in the upcoming referendum on an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice to Parliament. We support this change to the Australian Constitution that will recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples as the first peoples of this land.
We have heard the invitation in the Uluru Statement From the Heart and are backing the message from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander leaders for Voice, Treaty and Truth.
'Country is everything. It's family, it's life, it's connection'.
Jude Barlow, Ngunnawal Elder
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People cared for this country for over 65,000 years. It is important for us as an environment organisation seeking to protect nature and address climate damage, that we hear the voices of First Nations peoples and stand with them on the proposed reforms outlined in the Uluru Statement and beyond.
Why this matters to the environment movement in Queensland
'Country' is the term often used by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to describe the lands, waterways and seas to which they are connected. The term contains complex ideas about lore, place, custom, language, spiritual belief, cultural practice, material sustenance, family and identity.
As an environment movement across Queensland, who works to protect, conserve and sustain our unique environment for the benefit of all, we need to ensure that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are leading the conversation on how to protect their Country best.
To endorse a 'YES' vote in the upcoming referendum would be a first step in demonstrating that we, as an environment movement, are here to listen, learn and help to protect Country together.
It is vital that we engage in reflective discussions and generous listening so that we can fully understand one another, learn together and move toward a shared understanding of our role as the conservation movement in Queensland.
'We seek constitutional reforms to empower our people and take a rightful place in our own country. When we have power over our destiny our children will flourish. They will walk in two worlds and their culture will be a gift to their country.'
- Uluru Statement from the Heart