Indigenous voice to parliament explained


* What is the referendum about?

A referendum will be called to change the wording in Australia's Constitution to recognise Indigenous people and establish a voice to parliament.

* When will it be held?

A date has not been set but Prime Minister Anthony Albanese confirmed a referendum would take place before the end of the year.

* What will the referendum question be?

The draft referendum question is: "Do you support an alteration to the constitution that establishes an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voice?"

* What is a voice to parliament?

An advisory body parliament would consult with on legislative matters that affect Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

It would not be able to veto decisions made by the federal government or cabinet.

The federal parliament will legislate details about how the body is formed and operates if the referendum is successful.

* What other changes will be made to the constitution?

The federal government will recommend three sentences be added:

1. There shall be a body, to be called the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voice.

2. The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voice may make representations to parliament and the executive government on matters relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

3. The parliament shall, subject to this constitution, have power to make laws with respect to the composition, functions, powers and procedures of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voice.

* Do the Liberal and National parties support the voice to parliament?

The National Party has formally announced it will oppose the referendum while the Liberal Party room has not revealed its position.

Nationals Leader David Littleproud said his party did not believe a voice would help close the gap to improve the lives of Indigenous Australians.

Opposition Leader Peter Dutton has not yet revealed whether the Liberal Party would support a referendum but has called for more detail about the advisory body.

* Will there be more details about how the voice will operate?

A referendum working group co-chaired by Indigenous Australians Minister Linda Burney and made up of representatives from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities across Australia will release more details before a vote is held.