Myths and realities on the Voice
Updated: Aug 30
There are many myths on the Voice. They could be leading you to #VoteNo. But the realities might change your mind. The Voice is nothing to be scared of. It’s something Australia can be proud of.
Myth: The Voice will create a third chamber of parliament.
Reality: The Voice will only be an advisory body. It will have no power to veto or approve legislation.
Myth: The Voice would be undemocratic.
Reality: The Voice will not replace elected representatives. It will have no legislative powers. It will simply provide advice and guidance.
Myth: The Voice would be expensive.
Reality: The cost of the Voice will be relatively small compared to the overall budget. And it will improve the effectiveness of expenditure on closing-the-gap.
Myth: The Voice would be divisive.
Reality: The Voice will actually promote reconciliation and bring together Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians by creating a culture of listening and a forum for dialogue and collaboration.
Myth: The Voice would be unconstitutional.
Reality: The proposal has been carefully designed to be consistent with Australia's Constitution. It does not infringe on Australia's laws.
Myth: The Voice would give Indigenous Australians special treatment.
Reality: The proposal is not about special treatment. It's about acknowledging the unique place of Indigenous cultures and history in Australia and ensuring that Indigenous voices are heard in the political process.
Myth: The Voice to would be ineffective.
Reality: There is evidence from other countries that similar advisory bodies can be very effective. Canada, New Zealand and the US all have bodies like the Voice. Better-informed parliaments make better laws which can have a more positive impact on the lives of everyone.
Myth: The Voice would create more bureaucracy.
Reality: The proposal is designed to be lean and efficient, with a small secretariat.
Myth: Indigenous Australians are divided on the Voice.
Reality: The proposal has been developed in close consultation with Indigenous communities and is inclusive and representative. Over 80% of First Australians already support the Voice.
Myth: The Voice would undermine the authority of elected governments.
Reality: The proposal is advisory only. It will have no power to veto or approve legislation. Ultimate decision-making power remains with elected Australian governments.
To summarise, the Voice to Parliament will promote reconciliation, acknowledge the unique place of Indigenous cultures in Australia, and provide an effective forum for dialogue and collaboration. It will not be a third chamber of parliament. It will not be undemocratic, unconstitutional or prohibitively expensive. It will not create more bureaucracy. It will not be divisive for Indigenous Australians, and it will not undermine the authority of elected Australian governments.
Don't get sucked in by the myths. Amending our constitution to give First Nations a Voice to Parliament will demonstrate that Australia has grown up as a nation. That we are a nation which is honest with itself and ready to recognise past injustices. A nation committed to building a better future together and in which everyone's rights and dignity are protected equally. #VoteYes.