4 May 2021

The St Vincent de Paul Society National Council of Australia welcomes the opportunity to provide a submission in response to the Indigenous voice co-design interim report to the Australian Government.

The Society supports the position that to enable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander involvement in decision-making, significant constitutional and structural changes are required.

A National Voice “enshrined in the Constitution” optimises empowerment, self-determination and subsidiarity. Substantial reform to consultation processes and the delivery of programs is also needed.

Any membership, representative or consultative body needs to reflect the fact that communities are unique and constantly changing; and the body needs to be agile enough to respond to localised issues but have the mandate to address national matters.

The St Vincent de Paul Society in this submission does not claim any special authority and is not speaking on behalf of First Nations Peoples, but rather standing in respectful solidarity.

View full submission here.