Now that the Australian Government has officially endorsed the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of First Peoples we look around at what needs to be done to rebalance life in Australia.
Many of those voices making the call to Close the Gap between indigenous and non-indigenous peoples in Australia presume that this can be achieved without major reform to the dominantly Anglo-Australian life formation.
They are mistaken. Anglo-Australia, as presently constituted, is inherently unable to restore (let alone maintain) the full well-being of Australia’s First Peoples.
To genuinely close the gap – to draw level – requires real reform to modern Anglo-Australian Ways.
A key question is
“What is it we have to change within our Ways in order to restore First Peoples to full well-being?”
* At one level, reform Parliament by giving First Peoples a real say in how our laws are made is one way by which we may genuinely move towards closing the gap and drawing level.
* At another, reform our systems of governance with processes which re-centres much of our decision-making into the heart of the local and regional communities where we actually live.
* And on the fundamental level, and in a dialogue between cultural partners, creatively fashion a new sense of identity – who we are and how we relate to the rest of life.