Statement from Stella Avramopoulos
As the CEO of Good Shepherd, I believe that statements on the outcome of the Voice Referendum need to be led by our First Nations peoples, and we need to hear them in their own words, as part of our ongoing commitment to truth telling and walking with them.
The following is a letter from Uncle Ron Briggs, our Senior Aboriginal Cultural Advisor. This is Good Shepherd Australia New Zealand’s statement on the outcome of the Voice Referendum.
Statement on the outcome of the Voice Referendum
How yous goin’?
Thank you so much for standing side by side with me and all First Nations peoples and for carrying the load throughout this referendum with us, within Good Shepherd and outside within your communities.
We set out to make history and though we didn’t achieve a Yes vote, we have still made history. We’ve had thousands of conversations with our fellow Australians that have been weeks, months, years, and decades in the making.
Those conversations continue. We have opened up the eyes, ears and hearts of Australians and we are now one step closer to what we want to achieve, and will continue our work for generations, alongside your daughters, sons and grandchildren.
We have left a pathway for future generations to carry on the work that is needed within our hearts.
Our conversations at Good Shepherd have helped to highlight the important place that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples have in our country’s 65,000-year history, with an unbroken spiritual, cultural and political connection to these lands we call Australia.
We at Good Shepherd have helped to inform, educate and advocate to people about why change is needed to create better more meaningful outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.
Be proud of what you and we have achieved together, even if the referendum did not have the outcome we wanted. Change will come. This is not new to us – the doors are opening and hopefully all Australians will listen to First Nations people and act upon our concerns.
We are one but we are many.
Uncle Ron Briggs
Senior Aboriginal Cultural Advisor
Manager, Media and Communications
0407 091 383