Social Issues and the Board: Voice to Parliament


    Organisations and their boards face increasing stakeholder and community expectations to have public positions on important social issues, including where political and public debate is underway. The upcoming national referendum on a First Nations Voice to Parliament is one current example of an issue many boards are discussing.

    AICD members have sought guidance on frameworks and processes that boards can apply to facilitate effective governance discussions. To support members, the AICD has interviewed some of Australia’s leading directors to gain insights on board processes that can support effective boardroom discussion and governance oversight of these issues.

    This article does not address the detail of the Voice to Parliament, nor advocate for organisations to take a position (whether supportive or in opposition) on the referendum proposal.

    It focuses on how boards of companies and not-forprofits are considering the topic and shares examples and insights from experienced directors. We also suggest questions for directors to ask when considering an issue like the Voice.

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