Finding the Heart of the Nation by Thomas Mayor
In 2017, over two hundred and fifty Indigenous representatives from around the country gathered at Uluru and unanimously adopted the Uluru Statement from the Heart. The last paragraph reads, ‘In 1967 we were counted, in 2017 we seek to be heard. We leave base camp and start our trek across this vast country. We invite you to walk with us in a movement of the Australian people for a better future.’
The Indigenous people of Australia have occupied this country for over 60,000 years, their sovereignty was never ceded. For two hundred years their sovereignty has been usurped and in the Statement they laid out a path for reform that would empower their people and enable them to take a rightful place in their own country. The Statement made three proposals: first, for a First Nations’ Voice enshrined in the Constitution; second, for a Makarrata Commission to supervise agreement making or treaties; and third, a process of truth telling for the nation. The then Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, rejected the main plank of the Statement, the Voice, and this has been reiterated by Scott Morrison.
In this moving book, Thomas Mayor, a delegate to the Convention, takes us through his journey and through conversations with twenty other key people to help us understand the significance of the Uluru Statement. This a beautiful illustrated hardback that should be in every home and library.