Senate to hold final vote setting up Voice referendum

The Albanese government has released its blueprint to address Indigenous inequity.

The Albanese government has released its blueprint to address Indigenous inequity. Photo: AAP

Debate on the Indigenous Voice will soon turn over to the public, with parliament to pass laws that will set up the referendum.

The Senate will on Monday hold the final vote to finalise the form of the referendum and the proposed constitutional change, should it be successful.

Once passed, the six-month time limit on when the referendum can be held will also start.

The government has flagged the referendum to establish an Indigenous voice will be held between October and December.

While the Coalition has spoken out against the Indigenous Voice, most senators will vote to set up the referendum to allow the public to have their say.

However, some party members have been designated to vote against the bill. That will allow them to outline arguments for a ‘no’ vote in pamphlets that will be sent to all Australian households.

Indigenous Australians Minister Linda Burney said she was confident support for the ‘yes’ campaign will rise once debate moves out of Parliament House and into communities.

“I know that Australians will rise to the occasion in terms of this referendum. I have so much faith in the Australian people,” she told Sky News on Sunday.

“The constitution alteration bill will move through the Senate and then we are off and racing in a full scale referendum campaign.”

indigenous voice referendum

While one recent opinion poll showed support the ‘yes’ vote had fallen below 50 per cent, Ms Burney said she was optimistic of the Voice’s success, invoking the challenges of other Indigenous rights campaigners in advocating for change.

“They all had challenges … they all had mountains to climb and they were all successful,” she said.

“This is going to be hard, but now that we have almost finished the work in parliament, the campaign will kick in.”


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