As a result of the vote, the referendum will take place over the next two to six months; the government has already indicated that it will happen between October and December.
The public gallery gave the bill a standing ovation and applauded repeatedly when it was approved. A day “as big as Uluru” has been lauded for the final parliamentary vote on calling a referendum to include an Indigenous voice in the constitution, as per The Australia Today.
Labour senator Murray Watt claimed that the significance of the day was “as big as Uluru.” Assistant Indigenous Australians Minister Malarndirri McCarthy agreed.
Australian PM Anthony Albanese said Australians would now be able to have their say.
He tweeted, “Parliament has just said yes to holding a referendum. Now the Australian people will have a chance to say yes. Together, we can make history by enshrining recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in our constitution.”
While the majority of coalition senators opposed the Indigenous voice, most of them supported to hold the referendum so that the general public may voice their opinions.
Senator Michaelia Cash, a liberal, supported the referendum law but called the voice “risky, unknown, and divisive,” according to The Australia Today.
The voice, according to Jacinta Nampijinpa Price, a spokesman for the opposition Indigenous Australians, is dividing Australians.
Lidia Thorpe, an independent senator, claimed it would only be symbolic and ignore concerns affecting Indigenous people.
Instead, she asked the government to establish a pact, referring to the voice as a helpless body.
“Happy assimilation day, everybody,” Senator Thorpe said. Upon passing of bill, she yelled out, “Another day in the colony, another nail in the coffin,” as per The Australia Today.
Megan Davis, co-chair of Uluru Dialogue said that the bill passing was a historic moment.
“We’re closer to a referendum to finally give First Nations Peoples a chance to be heard,” Davis said.
Some senators were designated to vote against the bill to allow them to provide their justifications for a “no” vote in pamphlets distributed to every Australian home.
Senator Price, Senator Bridget McKenzie of the Nationals, and Senator Thorpe were among the senators who cast “no” votes in the chamber.
According to Liberal MP Julian Leeser, who resigned from the party’s front bench owing to his support for the voice, a “yes” vote would result in real change, The Australia Today reported. (ANI)