“This time, we know we all can stand together with the power to be powerful, believing we can make it better.”
These lyrics show why John Farnham’s classic anthem You’re The Voice is a fitting soundtrack for the Yes campaign in the upcoming referendum.
It’s about people coming together, listening to each other, and choosing to make things better.
That is exactly the choice Australians have on October 14 – a once-in-a-generation opportunity.
A chance to vote for recognition, for listening and for better results.
A chance to vote for an idea that came from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people themselves.
This change is supported by more than 80 per cent of Indigenous Australians.
The Voice will offer ideas and advice, so governments can make better decisions to address the challenges facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
It will be an advisory committee, made up of representatives from across the country.
The Voice will not have the power to make or veto government decisions.
What it will do is improve outcomes in Indigenous health, housing, education, and employment.
For too long, governments with good intentions have spent billions of dollars trying to deal with these issues.
But they haven’t achieved lasting improvement because they haven’t listened to people on the ground.
And there are big challenges facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
They include a life expectancy eight years shorter than non-Indigenous Australians and children almost twice as likely to die before their first birthday.
The current approach is broken and the Voice is our best chance to fix it.
We know that by giving those affected a say will save money and make sure funding actually delivers for people on the ground.
Australians from all walks of life, all faiths and all sides of politics are backing the Voice as the best solution.
Federal MPs Bridget Archer and Julian Leeser are just two Liberal Party members supporting the Yes campaign – and will be holding a town hall event about the Voice in Launceston later this month.
They want to ensure the people of Launceston have the chance to learn more about the referendum, because they know it will take Australians saying Yes to the Voice to make it real.
Voting Yes is a vote for recognition, listening and for better outcomes.
Voting No closes the door on the opportunity to move forward.
We have nothing to lose by supporting constitutional recognition through a Voice, but we have so much to gain.
As the song goes, “we have the chance to turn the pages over.”
We all get one vote, we all get an equal say and we all have an opportunity now to turn the page.
Together, we can come together to ensure a better future for all Australians.
Originally published in The Examiner.