• First Peoples
  • Your community

Statement following Referendum

Published 30 October 2023
We understand that recent weeks have been a difficult and challenging time for many and particularly our First Peoples community.

With the referendum decided, it’s more crucial than ever to strive for reconciliation, understanding and compassion between Indigenous and non-Indigenous members of our community.

We are continuing to do what we can to support and encourage these important conversations, which all contribute to achieving our vision of Port Phillip as an inclusive city for all and one that is committed to reconciliation.

Ours was one of the first Australian councils to offer an apology to members of the Stolen Generation (1997). We are building on this legacy through the development of our third reconciliation action plan. Traditional owner groups, first nation people and community are encouraged to participate in opportunities to inform and strengthen our reconciliation action plan.

There are many opportunities for us to come together. We invite you to join us in the journey towards reconciliation through participating in events including:

  • the We-Akon Dilinja (Morning of Mourning) ceremony held on 26 January in partnership with the Boonwurrung Land and Sea Council. This annual commemorative service, presented from the perspective of First Nations performers and speakers, looks to a united future while acknowledging the past. Attendance is growing every year as members of our community come to hear and support the theme of inclusion at the heart of this moving ceremony
  • the First Peoples First celebration of music, art and culture returning to our St Kilda Festival on 17 February 2024.