Constitutional recognition of Indigenous Australians
JOINT PRESS RELEASE:
The Hon. Tony Abbott MHR, Leader of the Opposition
Sen the Hon. George Brandisc SC, Shadow Attorney-General
Sen the Hon. Nigel Scullion, Shadow Minister for Indigenous Affairs
Today the Expert Panel on the Constitutional Recognition of Indigenous Australians delivered its report.
This distinguished group included bipartisan representation. The Coalition was represented on the Expert Panel by the first indigenous Member of the House of Representatives, Mr Ken Wyatt AM MP.
On behalf of the federal Coalition, we thank the Expert Panel for undertaking this important task.
The Coalition will now carefully study the report and then release a formal response.
The Coalition has a proud history of seeking to secure indigenous recognition in the Constitution. Since 2007 it has been Coalition policy to hold a referendum on the addition to the Constitution of a preamble recognising Indigenous Australians. We also support the repeal of obsolete racially discriminatory provisions.
The key objective of any referendum is to achieve a unifying moment for the nation similar to that achieved by the 1967 constitutional referendum.
It is in that spirit that the Coalition will consider the report of the Expert Panel.
In examining the report we will be looking closely at the potential legal ramifications of any specific anti-discrimination power.