The Board and staff of Royal Far West has voted to support the Uluru Statement from the Heart.
RFW Board Chair Joan Treweeke OAM said the decision acknowledged the vital importance of the Uluru Statement and RFW’s support of the call for Constitutional reform to empower Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and recognise their sovereignty with the land.
“Royal Far West is passionately committed to working in genuine partnership with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to realise the vision of the Uluru Statement from the Heart. We understand that this Statement is crucial to supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to take their rightful place in their own country, and to create the future that they want for their children. This is strongly aligned with our own mission to improve the health and wellbeing of children in rural and remote communities.”
Royal Far West has joined with organisations in calling for the Prime Minister and Australian Parliament to respect and back the full Uluru Statement from the Heart. We have signed on to The Uluru Statement and encourage others to join us in signing the Statement here and here.
Royal Far West CEO, Jacqueline Emery, said about signing on to the Uluru Statement:
“Royal Far West is an evidence-based and trauma-informed organisation. We understand that self-determination, agreement-making and truth-telling about past injustice is the only path to closing the gap in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children’s rates of developmental vulnerability and lifelong health and social outcomes. Royal Far West is committed to working to reflect these values in all that we do, and we urge the Prime Minister and the Parliament of Australia to support The Uluru Statement as a national priority, including a constitutionally enshrined voice to Parliament. We see clearly that this is the only way forward for a better future for all Australians.”
-41% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children are developmentally vulnerable on one or more developmental domains. This compares 22% of Australian children as a population average [AEDC 2018].
-This unacceptable developmental vulnerability gap is exacerbated the more rural and remote you go, and 65% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders live in regional, rural and remote areas of Australia, according to the National Rural Health Alliance.
Jacqueline Emery went on to say: “There is no doubt that this unacceptable gap in developmental vulnerability for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children is underpinned by the effects of the trauma of colonisation, dispossession and ongoing systemic racism and injustice. We are committed to working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community partners to support them to address these effects, first and foremost through the realisation of the Uluru Statement from the Heart, in the Australian Parliament, and across society.”
Approximately one quarter of Royal Far West’s client families identify as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander.
-In supporting the Uluru Statement from the Heart we are calling for nation-wide change. We are also committed to supporting the values of voice, treaty and truth to enact internal change within Royal Far West and the way we operate. We will do that by increasingAboriginal or Torres Strait Islander children’s voices, through our advisory group.
-Respecting the ancient sovereignty of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander people and their culture by working in partnership with them in addressing the needs of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander children, in the manner they wish to do so.
-Committing to understanding the truth about the origins and impact of the alienation of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander children from their families, including our own role in this injustice, and recognise the importance of trauma-informed care in helping Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander children flourish.
We urge the Australian Parliament to listen to First Nations peoples’ recommendations in the Uluru Statement, and to back this attempt to improve their circumstances and participate more fully in Australian society.
We want Australia to embark on a path of policies and associated expenditure on interventions and activities that are effective and community led.. We want to see real change.
Giving First Nations peoples a say in the decisions that affect their lives and the lives of their children, will provide an opportunity for doing things differently and more productively, by simply listening to the advice of people who are affected, and by allowing First Nations peoples to claim their rightful place in the nation.
Establishment of the Makarrata Commission will enshrine the mechanisms for fair agreement making and deep truth-telling about the true history of colonisation and injustice to move towards the healing that will create a better future for all people in this country.
Read our Reconciliation Action Plan.