On October 14, 2023, the Australian people overwhelmingly voted no to enshrining an Indigenous Voice to Parliament in the Australian Constitution.
CatholicCare Victoria is saddened by this outcome, however, we are grateful for those who supported the ‘Yes vote’ and together we will continue to strive for better outcomes for First Nations people.
Here at CatholicCare Victoria, we are deeply devoted to disrupting disadvantage and building thriving and inclusive communities where people, as created in the image of God, experience their unique dignity in a compassionate and just society.
We believe that amplifying First Nations voices in Australian society is key to improving the lives of Indigenous Australians. We acknowledge and applaud all who have worked tirelessly to see a positive result in the lead-up to the referendum, and those who have worked to assist the Australian people to make a well-informed decision.
As we look toward the future, we remain committed to the ideals of the Uluru Statement from the Heart, and the ongoing work of truth-telling and treaty.
As such, we continue to support the undertaking of initiatives such as the Yoorrook Justice Commission and the work of the First Peoples’ Assembly of Victoria.
We hope that the work that has happened in the lead-up to this referendum will, in time, offer a path to greater respect, empowerment, and outcomes for Indigenous Australians.
We have refrained from commenting on the results of the referendum until now out of respect for those who chose a week of silence, and to take the time to consider this outcome.
We acknowledge the ongoing strength and resilience of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people during this difficult time, and we stand with them in solidarity.