Keeping all Australians informed on the road to a referendum
[by Sarah Vahtola]
SBS is providing unparalleled multiplatform and multilingual news and information across its network as Australians prepare to vote in a referendum on an Indigenous Voice to Parliament. Delivering in more than 60 languages, SBS is a source of trusted, accurate and reliable coverage and context for all Australians, including news, explainers, and information on how to enrol to vote and take part in the process.
With NITV providing a vital platform for a diversity of First Nations voices, a unique ability to reach and engage all Australians in their preferred language through SBS Audio, and as home to Australia’s most trusted news brand in SBS News, SBS is playing a crucial role in supporting all Australians to be informed and engage in the national conversation.
Tanya Denning-Orman, a proud Birri and Guugu Yimidhirr woman and Director of Indigenous Content at SBS, said SBS and NITV’s unique role in covering the referendum is increasingly important as the debate gathers momentum.
“As the discussion about an Indigenous Voice to Parliament gets louder and the debate intensifies, SBS is uniquely positioned as a multiplatform, multilingual media network - home to Australia’s dedicated national First Nations broadcaster in NITV - to ensure all Australians have access to news and information that cuts through the noise.
“SBS is the network for all Australians to be informed before the vote, whatever language you speak, wherever you live, whoever your mob is. We’re trusted to provide impartial, balanced and accurate coverage that gives all Australians insights into key developments, news from the corridors of Canberra, and also shares the stories and perspectives from communities on Country. We’re providing an important platform for a diversity of voices to be heard while also countering misinformation and disinformation, to empower all Australians to be a part of this historic conversation.”
The content being delivered across the SBS network in more than 60 languages is available via the SBS Voice Referendum portal at sbs.com.au/VoiceReferendum - a dedicated online destination connecting audiences with the latest news, insights and analysis from across NITV, SBS News, and the multilingual SBS Audio network.
SBS also has a growing collection of video content available to stream on the SBS On Demand Voice Referendum hub. Alongside news and current affairs, short clips and full episodes of key programs, the hub also features truth-telling documentaries, series that educate and entertain, and movies that inspire greater understanding of First Nations peoples, histories and cultures.
SBS’s Uluru Statement of the Heart in Your Language collection, which re-expresses the statement in over 80 languages including more than 20 Aboriginal languages from communities in the Northern Territory and north Western Australia, can also be easily accessed at both online destinations.
Across the network, NITV, SBS News and SBS Audio teams are also breaking down information about the referendum through video, article and podcast explainers, covering everything from the process involved, key arguments for and against the Voice, context and the history of Indigenous affairs that have led to this moment, and more. SBS is also piloting Auslan interpreting of explainer videos to make this important content accessible for Australia’s deaf community.
Alongside NITV News and Nula, leading NITV’s coverage is The Point: Referendum Road Trip which returns tomorrow night, Tuesday 8 August, with a special program recorded at the Garma Festival on Gumatj Country at Gulkula, North East Arnhem Land, where the upcoming referendum has been a focus of discussion.
Hosted by Wuthathi and Meriam man, John Paul Janke, and Whadjuk Noongar woman, Network Ten’s Narelda Jacobs, The Point: Referendum Road Trip is elevating community voices as it travels to every state and territory this year. Having already broadcast from Waiben (Thursday Island), Boorloo (Perth) and Durumbal Country (Rockhampton), over the coming weeks The Point will head to lutruwita (Tasmania), Cummeragunja (on the New South Wales and Victorian border) and Tandanya (Adelaide), the Pilbara and Mparntwe (Alice Springs), and also from the studio on Cammeraygal Country in Sydney.
As well as panel discussions, the program will continue to include commentary and analysis from Voice Correspondent for SBS and NITV, Gamilaroi man Cameron Gooley, and current affairs features from National Point Correspondent and Gamilaroi woman Keira Jenkins. It also includes special segments ‘History Bites’ with John Paul Janke, reflecting on key historic moments in Australia’s path to referendum, and ‘Miss Information’ with “Australia’s number one drag journalist”, dispelling myths and interviewing politicians which have so far included Minister for Indigenous Australians Linda Burney, Senator Lidia Thorpe, and Senator David Pocock, among others.
The Point: Referendum Road Trip airs weekly on Tuesday nights at 7.30pm on NITV and 10.30pm on SBS, and on SBS On Demand where episodes are made available with subtitles in Arabic, Vietnamese, Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese.
As the nation gets closer to a vote, there will be a suite of programming scheduled on NITV and across the wider network showcasing First Nations stories and perspectives, including the premiere of new NITV original documentaries. SBS will present a special episode of Insight hosted by Living Black’s Karla Grant discussing views and perspectives on an Indigenous Voice to Parliament, and Grant will also present an episode of SBS’s international current affairs show Dateline exploring how the Sámi Parliament works to advise the Norwegian government. Then on referendum day and in the days following, NITV will feature special coverage and analysis providing a unique First Nations lens as the vote unfolds and Australia reacts to a result.
Stay informed on the 2023 Indigenous Voice to Parliament referendum from across the SBS Network, including First Nations perspectives through NITV. Visit the SBS Voice Referendum portal at sbs.com.au/VoiceReferendum to access articles, videos and podcasts in over 60 languages, or stream the latest news and analysis, docos and entertainment for free, at the Voice Referendum hub on SBS On Demand.
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