The Communist Party of Australia Central Committee at its meeting in January 2023 came out proudly in favour of a YES vote in the upcoming referendum on a Voice to parliament for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
We listen to the words from the Uluru Statement from the Heart: “We seek constitutional reforms to empower our people and take a rightful place in our own Country. We call for the establishment of a First Nations Voice in the Constitution.”
“The referendum question presents us with an opportunity for historical change, for Australia to enshrine a First Nations Voice. The answer must be YES!” said Andrew Irving, CPA General Secretary.
A NO vote would represent a win for racism, colonialism, intolerance and the far right in Australia. The CPA has pledged its forces to campaign for a YES vote. This will be a platform to further the struggles for Indigenous rights.
The CPA was the first political party in Australia to recognise that white Australia was built on stolen land and recognise the ongoing claim by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people for land rights. The CPA has always stood in solidarity with Indigenous Australians.
The Voice could introduce a new period of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people’s engagement and empowerment, providing a constitutional platform to speak out, challenge, rally campaigns and build solidarity in the community.
The establishment of the Voice must also be linked to the Makarrata process, and truth-telling about colonialism and First Nations history.
While the Party supports the Voice, it knows that Land Rights, real recognition, prosperity, and control over the affairs of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people will not be gifted or bestowed on them by Australia’s dominant capitalist class. Change only happens by consistent and ongoing campaigning, struggle, and the solidarity with the people.
The CPA is strongly committed to struggling alongside Indigenous Australians for their rights, for truth telling and treaty. The Voice must be seen as a significant step forward in the long struggle ahead.
The CPA calls on all its members and supporters to actively vote and campaign for the YES in the upcoming referendum.