It is clear from the process we undertook in the second half of 2017 through the two Summits and the co-design workshops with sub-regions, that a common language about reform has grown amongst our people.

We are all talking a very similar language. Certainly there is a great diversity of views that are held by people coming from different perspectives, and this contributes to our agenda and is part of our strength. Our agenda cannot be simple consensus. It is good that we have forthright views from all quarters, and that our people have the freedom to express those views and to contribute in a co-design process to our plans going forward.

Whilst there is a healthy level of debate and discussion in relation to our agenda, it is very clear that we all want the same thing: a better future for our children. It is in relation to our reform goal – to Close the Gap on our people’s disparity – that we have complete common ground. This is why we have united together in proposing this reform direction.

There is a new season – and a rising leadership

This is a season of hope and aspiration and determination. A time of resolution and dedicated commitment to rebuilding our people, to strengthening our culture and to setting our children up for better futures.

We have had great success in nurturing our leadership. The Cape York Leaders Program has been probably our most successful venture. Many of our current generation of new leaders are graduates of the program. It is this new leadership that is heralding the new season.

We are so well placed to move into this next phase because of the scores of regional leaders and hundreds of community leaders that are graduates of our Leaders Program over the past decade and a half.