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Big W Pulls ‘Yes’ Call As Voice Campaign Gets Ugly

Big W says it will pull a recommendation to vote ‘yes’ in the upcoming Voice referendum following a complaint from customers.

The Australian reports that Big W pulled “public address announcements about the Uluru Statement from the Heart and the Indigenous voice to parliament from all its stores, citing feedback from customers and staff”.

BigW says that during NAIDOC week it had begun using a new acknowledgement to country which included a reference to the Uluru Statement from the Heart and a call to support The Voice referendum, it reports.

The incident is the latest to hit the retail sector in the lead-upon to the referendum.

Yes campaign statement

Early this month, Nine issues an apology for running a ‘No’ campaign advertisement which targeted Wesfarmers chairman Michael Chaney and his daughter, Kate Chaney, a federal Teal team parliamentarian.

The  ad targeted Wesfarmers’ financial support for The Voice but was also condemned as racist.

The Australian Electoral Commission meanwhile is investigating flyers for the “no’ side that used an artwork of Uluru by indigenous artist Danny Eastwood without authorisation.

“It’s not just the painting, [Uluru is] an icon … they’ve taken a very sacred place to Aboriginals all over Australia and put graffiti on it,” he told The ABC. “I feel disgusted.”

No campaign

The pamphlet also wrongly claims that a ‘yes’ vote for The Voice binds Australia into a treaty which could include “reparations, a financial settlement, the resolution of land, water and resource issues, recognition of customary law”.

The yes campaign says The Voice would be an elected advisory body with an ability to make suggestions and recommendations to government but no power to force decision makers.

The Guardian meanwhile reports that’s a US-based Christian group has been assisting the ‘No’ campaign. It says the ‘no’ campaign had been working with “companies that appear to specialise in conservative Christian campaigning, including a US-headquartered marketing and fundraising firm that aims to help Christian nonprofit ministries ‘fulfill their mission’.”

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