Heartbreaking result as Voice referendum ‘No’ votes prevail

We come to you with heavy hearts. The result of the Voice referendum has left us devastated. We wanted address you, our valued human rights supporters, to express our profound disappointment. But mostly, we want to reinforce our unwavering commitment to First Nations justice.

The outcome of the referendum is not what we had hoped for and worked so tirelessly towards. Right now, we’re contending with the nation’s rejection of the generous, unifying invitation from First Nations communities across Australia for a brighter future for this county. We share in the deep discouragement that you may be feeling. The road ahead seems challenging, but please know that we are not giving up. Together, we will persevere in the face of adversity–towards a more equal and just nation.

We want to express our continued solidarity with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders, leaders, and communities who have been at the forefront of this plight for generations. Their dedication and unwavering commitment to ensure their rights and that of their community are upheld is an inspiration to us all. We stand with them, shoulder to shoulder, and we will support them in their ongoing fight for justice.

This result is a stark reminder that our work is far from over, and we must continue our efforts to educate, engage, and build consensus within our society. Even when faced with such results, we remain steadfast in our resolve to promote human rights for all.

If you want to do something right now to make a difference, take action in one of the following ways:

We want to express our sincerest gratitude to you, our supporters. For the invaluable role you’ve played, for walking alongside us on this journey. You signed our pledge to vote Yes, advocated to your family and friends, shared our resources, attended our webinars and events. Your contributions were essential. We couldn’t have come this far without you.

The battle for human rights for First Nations people is far from over. Significant gaps continue to exist in areas such as judicial justice, education, health, housing and more. And we are fully committed to continuing to campaign until these human rights are advanced and reflected in everyday life.

Importantly, we will keep working to keep children out of prisons across Australia by raising the age of criminal responsibility to at least 14 years old in line with international standards.

Your support has been instrumental. Your continued involvement is essential as we work toward a more just and equal society.

We draw strength from the shared commitment of people like you, and we remain hopeful for a brighter future. Together, we can make a difference.

With heartfelt gratitude and determination,

Kacey Teerman, Rodney Dillon and Rach McPhail
Indigenous Rights Team