Reconciliation with our Indigenous brothers and sisters is necessary for the future cohesion of our beautiful country, Australia. In addition, we need to ensure that Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) Australians do not face racial stereotyping and racism.
In order to achieve this, we need leadership from our political leaders, not cheap political point scoring that promotes fear, hatred and division rather than positive discussion that encourages unity, respect and understanding.
Andrew Laming tweeted on January 14: ‘Mobs tearing up Logan tonight. Did any of them do a day's work today, or was it business as usual and welfare on tap?’. This is a clear attempt to vilify Indigenous and CALD people and should be condemned.
Racism is not acceptable by anyone, let alone a person who holds the position of Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Indigenous Health.
As Race Discrimination Commissioner Helen Szoke makes clear, "research has found that 27% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples over the age of 15 reported experiencing discrimination in the preceding 12 months; in particular by the general public, in law and justice settings and in employment. Further recent research has found that three out of four Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples regularly experienced race discrimination when accessing primary health care, and that racism and cultural barriers led to some Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples not being diagnosed and treated for disease in its early stages, when treatment is most effective.” This point reflects the severity of the damage that statements such as Mr Laming’s make on society.
Mr Laming needs to apologise immediately, otherwise his position as a Shadow Frontbencher will become untenable, and thus should resign or be sacked if a sincere apology is not provided.
Thank you for your support. Together, we will build a stronger and happier Australia where we celebrate our common values and respect our differences - an inclusive Australia where all people are able to flourish.
*If you are also concerned about the impact that racism makes on the social fabric of the community, then please join this campaign to remove the racially discriminatory Sections in the Australian Constitution: