Navigating the Voice to Parliament

15 August 2023

As the Australian community journeys through the intricate topic of the Voice to Parliament, PACFA believes it’s important to bring our attention to the ongoing challenges faced by Indigenous communities and consult the resources that will provide an informed perspective on the referendum.

It’s essential that the disparities in healthcare outcomes endured by Australia’s Indigenous population are recognised – disparities that include, of course, mental health. The discrepancies in access to mental health resources and the impact of intergenerational trauma continue to be felt throughout the country.

The choice surrounding the Voice to Parliament referendum is a personal one and is rooted in the principles of democracy and individual agency. PACFA acknowledges this. Each Australian holds the power to shape their decision, and we encourage you to make it with careful consideration and a well-rounded understanding.

PACFA also recognises that many First Nations people are currently under significant pressure due to the cultural load imposed by the Voice referendum and aims to be supportive by providing this information to our members.

The following resources may be of assistance in your consideration and conversation.

1. Let’s yarn about Survival Day, 26 January by PACFA College of Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Healing Practices Convenors (CATSIHP), Prof. Judy Atkinson and Bianca Stawiarski

2. The Uluru Statement from the Heart on the Uluru Dialogue website.

3. YES or NO? Everything you need to know about the Indigenous Voice Referendum. A 20-minute explanatory video by ABC News In-depth

4. Official information about the Voice, provided by the Australian Government.

5. Debunking the myths and misconceptions about the Voice. An article provided by Monash University.

6. A guide to talking about the Voice to Parliament. Assistance to ensure respectful, empathetic conversations, provided by the Yes campaign.

7. Working to improve and promote social and emotional wellbeing, mental health and healing. A joint Statement by Gayaa Dhuwi (Proud Spirit) Australia, 13 Yarn and Healing Foundation.