The Voice to Parliament

The Great Barrier Reef Foundation says ‘Yes’ to recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the Australian Constitution and an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Voice to Parliament.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders are Australia’s first people, who since time immemorial have cared for their land and sea Country. They are the first scientists, farmers, engineers, innovators and conservationists. Traditional Owners successfully nurtured and protected the environment through changing seasons and climates, guided by traditional knowledge and customs passed down through generations. 

Following colonisation, Traditional Owners were systemically excluded from decisions that affected people and Country, including management decisions on the Great Barrier Reef. For over 40 years, Traditional Owners have sought to remedy this with formal recognition of their inherent rights and interests in the Reef and its catchments. 

Today, Traditional Owners are at the centre of the largest ever co-designed Reef protection effort. By weaving traditional knowledge with western science, they’re developing and applying innovative solutions to the challenges threatening coral reefs. Every day we see incredible leadership from Traditional Owners using their voices, actions and cultural knowledge to care for land and sea Country. 

We're deeply committed to supporting the equal rights and ambitions of Indigenous peoples and the invaluable contributions they make to conservation in Australia and around the world. We recognise the diverse range of opinions that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have about the referendum and we respect all sides of the debate. As a non-Indigenous organisation, we are guided by our Traditional Owner partners and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. It is our firm belief that the Voice is an important step towards equality and self-determination. 

The upcoming referendum provides a once-in-a-generation opportunity to choose a better future. We support the Uluru Statement from the Heart and the Voice to Parliament.

We’re all stronger when we stand together.  

The Voice