Dear Prime Minister
The Federal government must ensure the Voice to Parliament debate is free and fair
The Institute of Public Affairs was founded in 1943 as a non-profit educational research organisation with the objectives: to further the individual, social, political, and economic freedom of the Australian people; and to maintain and enhance the Australian way of life.
A central strand of the IPA’s research for 80 years has been on Australia’s democratic traditions, including in relation to freedom of speech, egalitarianism, and tolerance for the diverse views of the community.
Foundational to the Australian way of life is that every Australian should have an equal say over the big issues facing our nation’s future, and for debate to be conducted in a free and fair manner.
It is in this context that I am writing to you and your colleagues to bring to your attention a critical matter relating to the actions of major digital platforms, or ‘big tech’ companies, to attempt to manipulate public discourse in favour of one side of the debate. This letter outlines three recent acts of censorship by major digital platforms in relation to the Voice debate.
On 18 January 2023, during an interview with Ben Fordham on 2GB Radio, you confirmed that Australians should ‘come forward’ with suggested improvements to the Voice, saying ‘you’ve got my phone number: make a suggestion.’ The IPA is sharing our suggestions in this letter for how the government can act to ensure Australians can have a free and fair debate…