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“Walk With Us to a Better Future”: The Voice to Parliament and the Road Ahead

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Professor Tom Calma AO is one of Australia’s most respected human rights and social justice campaigners.  He is Senior Australian of the Year 2023, and he is a social work graduate.

Prof Calma AO is a- Kungarakan Elder and has worked for more than 45 years at local, community, state and international levels championing the rights, responsibilities and welfare of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.  He co-led the co-design of a Voice to Parliament initiative.

His call for Australia to address the gap in life expectancy between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples was the catalyst for the Close the Gap Campaign.  He was instrumental in establishing the National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples; has led the Tackling Indigenous Smoking program; and has co-chaired Reconciliation Australia for over a decade.

For NAIDOC Week in early July 2023, the AASW invited Prof Calma AO to present a Webinar for our members about the approaching Referendum to recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples in the Australian Constitution and to enable them to advise Parliament and the government, through a Voice to Parliament.

The Webinar was facilitated by Linda Ford, a Director of the AASW

PROFILES

PROFESSOR TOM CALMA AO
https://australianoftheyear.org.au/recipients/professor-tom-calma-ao 

LINDA FORD
https://www.aasw.asn.au/about-aasw/board-of-directors/ 

 

MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE

INFORMATION ABOUT THE REFERENDUM:
‘Referendums. It’s been a while’, Australian Electoral Commission: 
https://www.aec.gov.au/referendums/ 

Information about the Voice: 
https://voice.gov.au/ 

The Uluru Statement from the Heart: 
https://ulurustatement.org/ 

YES23 Community Based Campaign: 
https://yes23.com.au/ 

Allies for Uluru: 
https://alliesforuluru.antar.org.au/ 

Victorian Women’s Trust Resources: 
https://www.vwt.org.au/watch-together-yes-how-we-can-work-together-to-enshrine-a-first-nations-voice-in-our-national-constitution/ 

 

Acknowledgement of Traditional Owners
The Australian Association of Social Workers respectfully acknowledges the past and present Traditional Owners and ongoing Custodians of the land on which this podcast is being recorded. We pay our respects to their Elders past and present, their ancestors and their families, and to the Elders of other communities who may be listening.

 

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