Ideas & Society Program: Noel Pearson on The Voice
Within a matter of months the Australian people will be asked to decide at referendum whether the First Peoples of Australia will be recognised in the Constitution through the establishment of a new institution, an indigenous Voice to Parliament.
- Tuesday 25 July 2023 05:00 pm until Tuesday 25 July 2023 06:30 pm (Add to calendar)
- University Events
- Presented by:
- Ideas & Society Program
- Type of Event:
- Alumni; Community Event; Public Lecture
- Free to register
Within a matter of months the Australian people will be asked to decide at referendum whether the First Peoples of Australia will be recognised in the Constitution through the establishment of a new institution, an Indigenous Voice to Parliament.
In 2017, after years of discussions with their communities across the continent, the Indigenous peoples settled upon a profoundly moving form of words—"The Uluru Statement from the Heart”—inviting all citizens to recognise the Indigenous peoples of Australia within the Constitution so that the nation and its democracy could be complete.
Soon after, the Indigenous peoples settled upon the idea of an advisory body—"The Voice to Parliament”—entrenched within the Constitution, as the most effective and practical means by which the possibilities for improving the lives of Indigenous Australians offered by Constitutional Recognition could be realised.
According to the Convenor of La Trobe University’s Ideas and Society Program, Professor Robert Manne, “the result of the referendum on Indigenous Constitutional recognition and the Voice will determine the moral character of the nation for decades to come”.
“La Trobe University is honoured that Noel Pearson, one of the champions and architects of the marriage of Constitutional Recognition with the idea of the Voice to Parliament, has accepted our invitation. Noel has been for the past forty years one of Australia’s most creative and courageous public intellectuals and our nation's greatest orator.”
“We are also delighted that Shireen Morris has agreed to lead the conversation. Shireen worked closely with Noel for many years. She is also the author of Radical Heart, a brilliant history of the road that led to “Uluru—the Statement from the Heart” and to this year’s referendum.”
Noel Pearson’s conversation with Shireen Morris on Constitutional Recognition and The Voice is an event not to be missed by all those interested in the future of Australia.
Speaker: Noel Pearson
Noel Pearson comes from the Guugu Yimidhirr community of Hope Vale on south eastern Cape York Peninsula. Mr Pearson is a lawyer, Founder and Director of Strategy of the Cape York Partnership and Founder of Good to Great Schools Australia . Mr Pearson also co-founded the Cape York Land Council and helped to establish Apunipima Health Council, Balkanu Cape York Development Corporation and Indigenous Enterprise Partnerships. Mr Pearson served as a member of the Expert Panel on Constitutional Recognition of Indigenous Australians and the Referendum Council.
Participating Chair: Dr Shireen Morris
Dr Shireen Morris is a constitutional lawyer, senior lecturer and director of the Radical Centre Reform Lab at Macquarie University Law School. She has spent the last 12 years working with Indigenous leaders like Noel Pearson and working with Cape York Institute, devising and advocating the concept of a constitutionally guaranteed Indigenous Voice, which was the subject of her 2017 PhD thesis. Since 2020, Shireen has been particularly focussed on building multicultural and multifaith support for the Voice.
Other research interests include free speech and the implied freedom of political communication, Australian republicanism, and economic inequality. Shireen delivered the 2022 John Button Oration on radical centre economic reform. She publishes widely in academia and mainstream media and often commentates on TV and radio. Books include: Statements from the Soul: the moral case for the Uluru Statement from the Heart (2023), A First Nations Voice in the Australian Constitution (2020), A Rightful Place: a roadmap to recognition (2017), The Forgotten People: liberal and conservative approaches to recognising Indigenous peoples (2016).
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