Indigenous Affairs

First Peoples of Australia

The Australian Progressives recognise the significant cost of colonial imperialism borne by First Nations peoples. Australian State and Federal governments have failed on fronts of health and well-being right across the country stemming from a fundamental failure to understand culture and self-determination. Australia must stop talking at First Nations peoples and start listening if we want to see Indigenous lives improve and culture flourish.

The Australian Progressives:

  • Will work with the First Nations of Australia to write a treaty, or series of treaties; as decided through engagement with the First Peoples of Australia.

    Treaties provide a foundation of equality and respect that define mutually acceptable boundaries for developing policies between government and First Nations communities

 

  • Support the establishment of Makarrata.

    Makarrata is a word in the Yolngu language meaning “a coming together after a struggle, facing the facts of wrongs and living again in peace”. It is a form of reconciliation and closure and has been requested by First Nations representatives through the Uluru Statement from the Heart. Importantly, it includes a First Nations Voice enshrined in the Constitution - how this looks must be actively worked through.

 

  • Will push for a review into frameworks to improve progress achieving Closing the Gap goals.

    The annual Closing the Gap report is greeted with fanfare in Canberra but never lists meaningful improvements. The frameworks and policies within Closing the Gap need urgent review to improve their metrics and outcomes.

 

  • Advocate for long term funding initiatives to empower communities to solve their local issues.

    Financial independence is essential for First Nations communities to develop their own solutions to issues. There are many ways this might happen, the most appropriate will vary by community.
    Abolish the Cashless Debit Card [link to Eliminating Poverty Subsection]