Commissioner for First Nations Voice, Dale Agius

Dale Agius is South Australia's inaugural Commissioner for First Nations Voice.

The Commissioner’s role is to lead consultations with Aboriginal groups to lay the foundations for state-based implementation of the Uluru Statement from the Heart.

The first step of the Uluru Statement from the Heart is for a First Nations Voice to Parliament.

This will allow for First Nations people to have direct input into decisions made about them and to share their hopes and aspirations.

Engaging with the Community

The Commissioner held community engagements between August and October 2022 to seek the views of First Nations people about a Voice to the South Australian Parliament.

The Commissioner's First Engagement Report (PDF, 2.7 MB) was released on 9 November 2022. This engagement round found that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are seeking:

Commissioner for First Nations Voice to the South Australian Parliament - Engagement Report

  • A direct Voice to South Australian Parliament.
  • A Voice that is elected by First Nations people, to represent the grassroots communities.
  • The Voice to represent the diversity of the South Australian First Nations communities – including nation group diversity, gender, youth, and LGBTQIA+ people.
  • Direct access to government decision-makers, including Cabinet and chief executives.

Following this, the South Australian Government developed the draft Bill and model, based on these findings. The release of the draft Bill was accompanied by two boundary options for community feedback.

In November 2022, the Commissioner commenced a second round of community engagement, to seek feedback on the proposed model for the First Nations Voice to Parliament.

Stage 2 Engagement Report

This included both face-to-face statewide engagements with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, as well as written submissions from the broader community.

The Commissioner’s subsequent Engagement Note (PDF, 2.9 MB) was released in February 2023 and summarises the community feedback received on the draft First Nations Voice Bill, and makes a series of recommendations to the Attorney-General.

About Dale Agius

Dale is a Kaurna, Narungga, Ngadjuri and Ngarrindjeri person with connection to communities and Country across South Australia.

His previous roles include Director of Aboriginal Practice and Partnerships within the Department of Human Services, Manager of DHS’ Metropolitan Aboriginal Youth and Family Services and Executive Officer in the Office of the Commissioner for Aboriginal Engagement.

His experience and ability to connect with Aboriginal nation groups, mainstream service providers and Government agencies will be valuable for working collaboratively in bringing together a Voice model.

Away from work, Dale has been heavily involved in local sports as long serving President of the Kilburn Football and Cricket Club, Chair of the SA State Aboriginal Football and Netball Carnival and is a Director of the Tjindu Foundation which provides community-based cultural education activities for Aboriginal students across South Australia.

As Commissioner, Dale will lead talks with community and Government about the First Nations Voice to Parliament, ahead of a possible launch in 2023.