Last year, tens of thousands of GetUp members across the nation launched one of our most important campaigns ever: demanding that the next parliament and PM say 'sorry' to the Stolen Generations as their very first act on the very first sitting day.
Congratulations, yesterday the PM agreed! Yet as we speak the shape of this historical moment is still being determined in meetings between Labor and Indigenous representatives, in the Liberal party room and in the minds of the millions of Australians who aren't sure how they feel about an apology.
The most important thing the GetUp community can do is demonstrate to all our politicians the broad groundswell of support for a sincere and unifying apology from the whole Parliament. Can you email your MP a quick note right now - and urge all your friends and family to do the same? Our new online tool makes it easy - just enter your postcode.
Last October, we indicated that Australia's parliament holds a key to a new way forward - symbolically and practically: 'An apology is not about guilt or shame or individual responsibility - it is the embodiment of the spirit of reconciliation, and the springboard for a nation committed to stamp out the systemic ills that still flow from a nation unable to address its past wrongs'.
Our Indigenous colleagues have stressed two factors in the success of this new way forward. First, the supreme importance of cross party support when the PM takes to the Parliament floor. So, if your MP is Liberal, please urge him or her to push the party leadership to support the apology.
Second, the apology was always only meant to be the first step and must be acknowledged as such. So, if your MP is Labor, please support, commend, and thank them - but also remind them that this a starting point and that what is required now is the full and comprehensive response to the Bringing Them Home Report.
Help make this moment the kind of new beginning it deserves to be.
Thanks for being part of this,
The GetUp team
PS - Our friends at Reconciliation Australia have produced an excellent fact sheet about the apology. If you are unsure about its meaning or want to explain to others about the importance of the apology, please click here and forward it on. The Bringing Them Home Report can also be found here.
GetUp is an independent, not-for-profit community campaigning group. We use new technology to empower Australians to have their say on important national issues. We receive no political party or government funding, and every campaign we run is entirely supported by voluntary donations. If you'd like to contribute to help fund GetUp's work, please donate now! If you have trouble with any links in this email, please go directly to www.getup.org.au. To unsubscribe from GetUp, please click here.
Authorised by Brett Solomon, Level 2, 294 Pitt St, Sydney NSW 2000