Referendum on Indigenous Rights: Australians to Decide on Consultative Voice in Parliament

news 19-Jun-2023 World News

Referendum on Indigenous Rights in Australia

The Australians will decide via a referendum whether the indigenous population will have greater participation in parliament. The Senate voted in favor with a majority of 52 to 19. So far, the Aboriginal people are not mentioned in the constitution.

The House of Representatives and now the Senate have cleared the way for a planned referendum on constitutional reform in Australia to give the indigenous population of the country a consultative voice in parliament.

By law, the referendum must take place in the next two to six months. A date for the referendum has not yet been set. The indigenous groups in Australia are currently not mentioned in the Australian Constitution.

Key Electoral Promise of the Premier

The constitutional reform sought is aimed at having a group of indigenous Australians advise the government and parliament on matters concerning them, including health, education, or housing.

The advice of this group will not be legally binding, but it will be attributed with great symbolic significance. The referendum is a key electoral promise of Prime Minister Anthony Albanese.

Opposition leader Peter Dutton is against the constitutional reform, as he believes that the advisory group would divide Australians based on ethnic identity. Polls suggest that there is a slim majority in favor of the constitutional reform, although support has decreased in recent weeks.

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