Rest, one of Australia’s largest profit-to-member super funds, supports constitutional recognition of First Nations Australians, believing the Voice to Parliament is an opportunity to support a fairer and more equitable future for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Rest, which today launched its Reflect Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP), estimates around 75,000 of its members identify as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander peoples.
A Voice to Parliament enshrined in the constitution will give First Nations Australians, including Rest’s members, a meaningful long-term route to inform policy decisions that could improve their experiences with the superannuation and retirement income system, says Rest CEO Vicki Doyle.
“In the spirit of reconciliation, Rest joins Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in this historic opportunity to support a fairer and more equitable future for all Australians,” Ms Doyle said.
“With more than 1.9 million members, Rest represents the equivalent of one-in-seven working Australians, including many tens of thousands of members who identify as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander.
“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples are three times more likely to experience financial stress in retirement than other Australians. Due to lower life expectancy, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are also less likely to reach preservation age to access their retirement savings.
“We believe the Voice to Parliament will positively influence legislation and therefore lead to sustained, long-term policy improvements. This will give our First Nations members more opportunities to achieve greater retirement outcomes.
“Our First Nations members cannot wait another generation for change, which is why we will support the yes vote at the referendum.”
Rest’s support for the Voice to Parliament and commitment to a RAP is in line with Rest’s advocacy for a fairer and more equitable superannuation system that enhances the financial interests of our members, and the fund’s alignment to the UN Sustainable Development Goal 10: ‘Reduced inequalities’.
The RAP outlines how Rest will work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to promote reconciliation through our sphere of influence.
Rest acknowledges there will be diverse opinions on the Voice to Parliament and encourages respectful and constructive dialogue and learning throughout the referendum process.