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Football Australia's Ongoing Commitment Towards Recognition and Reconciliation

Today, Football Australia reaffirmed its support for the Uluru Statement from the Heart in full, including the Voice to Parliament.

In a resolute display of its commitment to reconciliation, Football Australia has once again affirmed its unwavering support for the Uluru Statement from the Heart, including the implementation of the Voice to Parliament. This reiteration solidifies Football Australia's position as one of the pioneering national sporting bodies to endorse 'the Voice,' following its initial declaration on September 13, 2022.

James Johnson, CEO of Football Australia, said, “As the largest club-based participation sport in the country, we are uniquely placed to play an important and significant role in Australia’s reconciliation journey.”

“Since its establishment, our National Indigenous Advisory Group (NIAG) have been instrumental in guiding Football Australia through key milestones, including our support for the Uluru Statement from the Heart in full, as we bring to life our commitment to being recognised as a leader in embedding respect and recognition First Nations voices and traditions.”

Football Australia NIAG co-chair, Jade North, said: "It's in our DNA as Australian football, we can’t continue to discuss football and the advancement of rights for our peoples without acknowledging the ongoing and modern-day legacy of Charlie Perkins."

Dr. Charles Nelson Perrurle Perkins AO (1936-2000), a member of the Arrenrnte and Kalkadoon people, emerged as a prominent figure in the civil rights movement. As part of the Stolen Generation, he fought tirelessly for justice and equality. Perkins played for Adelaide Croatia, Pan Hellenic in Sydney, and was a distinguished player for the South Australian state squad.

According to historical records from the Charles Perkins Centre at the University of Sydney: "In 1965, as a student at the University of Sydney, Dr Perkins organised a student bus tour around New South Wales to draw attention to the state of Indigenous health, education and housing, and to try and stimulate local action. This was called the Freedom ride, and it highlighted the state of race relations in Australia. It is recognised as one of Australia's most significant civil rights events.”

Courtney Fewquandie, a proud Butchulla and Gubbi Gubbi woman and the General Manager of First Nations at Football Australia, underscored the vital role of football in addressing current challenges. She stated, "Under the guidance of NIAG, Football Australia remains steadfast in its commitment to leveraging football's potential to promote recognition and culturally informed decision-making for First Nations people. The Uluru Statement, along with other urgent calls for systemic change driven by our people, highlights the crucial significance of the Voice to Parliament."

Football Australia proudly released the following official statement:

With this statement, Football Australia reaffirmed its unwavering dedication to promoting reconciliation, recognizing the contributions of First Nations peoples, and championing the principles set forth in the Uluru Statement from the Heart.

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