Monday, 4 February 2013

The latest from ANTAR: Constitution Recognition for Aboriginal People to be voted on next week

Be part of history in the making
significant step along the road to Constitutional Recognition is fast approaching.  The Bill of Recognition introduced to Federal Parliament in November is expected to be voted on next Wednesday 13 February.
Now is the time to voice your support for Constitutional reform - to recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in our nation's founding document and protect all Australians from racial discrimination.
We're asking you to support this big moment. Join us in the public gallery to view the debate and be with us in person to see history unfold.
Following the debate we will get a chance to hear from two Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander leaders about why recognition matters to them.
Jason Glanville (CEO of the National Centre of Indigenous Excellence) and Tanya Hosch (Deputy Campaign Director – Recognise) will make their first addresses to the National Press Club in Canberra at lunchtime that same day.
Join us at the Press Club to hear Tanya and Jason make the case for these long overdue changes to our nation's founding document. Book now for this event.
Tell our Parliamentarians that you support a Constitution based on recogition and equality.
ANTaR has been busy
The Joint Parliamentary Committee established in November and tasked with building support for Constitutional Recognition across the Parliament called for submissions late last year for comment on the draft Act of Recognition. 
ANTaR's submission welcomed the Act of Recognition as a next step on the road to referendum. We used the submission process to call for all Parliamentarians to remain focused on the end goal - a successful referendum - and to ensure the Act of Recognition reflected their support for real reform with substance.
On 22 January ANTaR's National Director, Jacqui Phillips, appeared before the Joint Select Committee to present the points discussed in our submission.
The Committee heard:
  • that ANTaR's key focus is on Constitutional change, via a successful referendum, as the ‘end goal’
  • that the reform proposals advanced by the Expert Panel offer a sound, robust and reasonable platform to take both the issue and the process of Constitutional Recognition forward
  • that ANTaR supports the passage of the bill as an interim measure, and an affirmation of Parliamentary intent to progress towards a referendum
  • that partnership, negotiation and engagement with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples will be essential to the ongoing legitimacy of the process, to ensuring the appropriateness of any final model for reform and to respecting human rights under the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
Jacqui's opening speech can be read here.
The Joint Committee released their report on 30 January recommending that the Parliament passes the Bill of Recognition. The full report can be read here.
Come along to the Parliament House public gallery to be part of history in the making. 
Coming Soon... Special footage from Rock For Recognition
Final editing of the Rock for Recognition videos is happening as we write.
Stay tuned on the Rock for Recognition Facebook page as we upload them to the You Tube Channel during February.

ANTaR National
P: 02 9280 0060
F: 02 9280 0061
Suite 401, 410 Elizabeth St
Surry Hills NSW 2010

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