International PEN Melbourne Centre
ULURU Statement from the Heart:
Support for a Voice to Parliament to be Enshrined in the Constitution
The International PEN Melbourne Centre works on the lands of the the Boon Wurrung and Woi Wurrung peoples of the Kulin Nation and we recognise that the sovereignty of these lands has never been ceded.
PEN Melbourne acknowledges that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have suffered historic and ongoing silencing since the colonisation of Australia beginning in 1788. The continuing exclusion of the voices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples from the government and legislative bodies of the Australian nation does incalculable harm in disadvantaging First Nations peoples in matters of education, justice, employment, welfare, and social and political participation. This exclusion deprives public discussion and parliamentary debate of an essential and fundamental element – the voices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on laws that will affect them and that will enrich the lives of all Australians.
The Australian constitution, since its inception, has served to benefit white Australians at the expense of the country’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Enshrining the Voice for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the Constitution will contribute to a just recognition for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and progress the struggle for sovereignty and self-determination.
READ the Uluru Statement from the Heart
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The closing date is 30 April 2021
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We encourage anyone with a love of writing and literature to join PEN Melbourne. We are an entirely voluntary and not-for-profit organisation and our members sustain and bring vitality to our work.