The General Synod of The Anglican Church of Australia states:
(a) It is deeply conscious of the long and close connection of Indigenous people with this land of Australia.
(b) That connection has been disrupted, profoundly disturbed and in many instances shattered during the past two hundred years, resulting in great suffering for Indigenous people.
(c) We welcome the recognition that Aboriginal people have rights to land with which they have a close connection.
(d) We support the Primate’s call in his Presidential Address for sensitive consultation rather than having an election on issues of race.
(e) Such consultation will need to deal carefully with the expectations, aspirations, fears and insecurities of all parties – Aborigines, Torres Strait Islanders, Miners and Pastoralists.
(f) We recognise our Christian obligation to speak out for the just rights of the disadvantaged and the poor.
(g) We need to do all we can to repair the wrongs of the past, conscious of the obligation to be fair and just to all Australians.
The General Synod urges all Australians to seek an honorable, decent and worthy compromise in the issue of native title and so further the cause of true reconciliation so that we might build a more secure, certain and prosperous Australia for all Australians.
The General Synod calls on all parties to reconsider their own position and be prepared to modify current demands.
The General Synod requests the Prime Minister:
(i) to reconsider the issues raised by the Senate amendments to the Government’s Native Title Legislation.
(ii) to revisit these issues and hold urgent discussions with all stakeholders.
[Dr P. Carroll – 19-2-98]