This 2023 National Reconciliation Week (27 May to 3 June) People with Disability Australia (PWDA) joins the theme, Be a Voice for Generations, in honour of the efforts of advocates and activists over time who have laboured for justice in Australia.
“National reconciliation week is an important time for all Australians to listen, reflect, acknowledge and come together as a community,” said PWDA Board Director and proud Gamilaraay woman living on living on Ngunnawal Country, Michelle Hyde.
“We also recognise the resilience, strength and cultural richness of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, and celebrate their ongoing contributions to Australian society,” said Dr Hyde.
“To be a Voice for Generations means taking action to address the ongoing impact of colonisation and systemic discrimination, and working towards a future where all Australians have the opportunity to thrive. It means educating ourselves and others about the history, culture and experiences of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and taking steps to promote greater understanding and respect,” she said.
“By remembering and honouring the work started by past generations we pave the way for future generations to continue this work,” said Gundungurra Woman, and PWDA Aboriginal Project Officer & Advocate Redress Project, Dianne Royce. “We must continue to collectively build relationships and communities that value the 80,000 years plus of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, cultures, and futures,” said Ms Royce.
“We urge all people with disability to join the voices of our Indigenous brothers and sisters with disability,” said PWDA President Nicole Lee.
“We all have a role to play when it comes to speaking up about reconciliation in tangible ways in our everyday lives,” said Ms Lee.
National Reconciliation Week incorporates two significant milestones in the reconciliation journey beginning with the successful 1967 referendum (27 May 1967) and the High Court Mabo decision (3 June 1992).
National Sorry Day, or the National Day of Healing, precedes National Reconciliation Week on Friday 26 May and marks the anniversary in 1997 when the Bringing Them Home report was tabled in the Australian Parliament. For the first time, the report gave voice and recognised the experiences of the Stolen Generations survivors, their families and communities.
The National organisation of and for Australia’s First Peoples with disability, their families and communities is First Peoples Disability Network Australia (FPDN). They work for the recognition, respect, protection and fulfilment of the human rights of First Peoples with disability and their families.
Craig Andrews, PWDA Media and Communications
+61 491 034 479
People with Disability Australia Incorporated (PWDA) is a national disability rights and advocacy, non-profit, non-government organisation. We have a cross-disability focus, representing the interests of people with all kinds of disability and our membership is made up of people with disability and organisations mainly constituted by people with disability.