YFS remains deeply saddened and shocked by the outcome of the Voice referendum on October 14. Since the referendum, we have been led by our First Nations staff in taking the time process the outcome and determine our way forward.
YFS remains committed to the vision of the Uluru Statement from the Heart and its generous invitation to walk together in a movement of the Australian people for a better future.
We offer our deepest sympathy to our First Nations staff, clients and community who continue to mourn the outcome. We will respectfully stand alongside you in your grief. We understand that you still need time to process this. When you are ready to speak, we will hear your voices. When you are ready to act, we will work with you on the next stage of our journey towards truth, justice, and healing.
YFS has also been disheartened by news that the Queensland Government is reconsidering their original commitment to the Path to Treaty. This decision comes at a time when we need moral courage and unity from our leaders on all sides of politics. We encourage the new Premier and Queensland Government to continue with the process of truth-telling and create opportunities to listen deeply to First Nations people and foster deep reflection across our communities about the true history and origins of this state, the ongoing impacts of colonisation, and the importance of Treaty.
We would like to see Queensland’s leaders – Government and non-Government – stand up, not step back. We as leaders have a moral responsibility to address the racial and cultural divisions that were highlighted and exacerbated by the referendum process and to protect and enhance the rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to self-determination.
YFS will continue to work in solidarity with First Nations leaders, Elders, staff and community to create a better future together.