This paper argues that current multiparty support has created a historic opportunity to recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the first peoples of Australia, and recommends changes to the Constitution.
The Expert Panel was tasked to report to the Government on possible options for constitutional change to give effect to indigenous constitutional recognition, including advice as to the level of support from indigenous people and the broader community for these options.
In formulating its recommendations, the Panel adopted four principles to guide its assessment of proposals for constitutional recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, namely that each proposal must:
• contribute to a more unified and reconciled nation;
• be of benefit to and accord with the wishes of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples;
• be capable of being supported by an overwhelming majority of Australians from across the political and social spectrums; and
• be technically and legally sound.