No matter what their individual circumstances, all single mothers want one thing: the freedom and support to be the mothers they want to be and to provide their children with the best start in life. Yet, the experience of single mothers is often one of being told who to be, what to do, and what’s best for their kids.
For Aboriginal single mothers it’s so much worse.
Being an Aboriginal single mother means living with an increased risk in poverty, discrimination, violence, and poor educational and health outcomes. For years, government, society and the media – people with no experience or understanding of Aboriginal culture or needs – have told Aboriginal single mothers what’s best for them.
The proposed Aboriginal Voice to Parliament will change that.
The Voice will give Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people agency to help inform decisions that impact their lives.
Currently, policy-making does not include a systematic process for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders to provide advice, meaning that policy is often made for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people rather than with them.
Constitutional recognition through a Voice would enable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to give advice to the Federal Parliament about laws and policies that impact them through a simplified policy making process and structural change.
This means that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders are included in the law-making process, rather than having bureaucrats and politicians deciding what is best for them.
Constitutional recognition through a Voice will deliver real and practical advice to Parliament and the Government on how laws and policies can best improve the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
When Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who know and understand the best way to deliver real and practical change in their communities have a say through a Voice, we will finally be able to close the gap that still exists between Aboriginal and Non-Indigenous Australians.
This is why it is so important.
As the referendum for a Voice to Parliament draws closer, we’re beginning to hear voices of opposition. While it’s important to listen to other opinions, the ones that are loudest are often politically or financially motivated and do not have the best interests of Aboriginal people at heart.
Aboriginal single mothers need to have their voices heard. Here’s some ways you can support the Voice.