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The Highs And Lows Of Kings Birthday Honours With Narelda Jacobs

Is it the media’s job to teach you about the upcoming referendum for a Voice to Parliament, or is it your own responsibility to fill the gaps in your knowledge?

This week on Blak Matters, Whadjuk Noongar journalist Narelda Jacobs OAM joins Teela Reid and MC to explore the media’s role in informing the public about the Voice, and what it means to her to be awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for her services to the media and to community.

Narelda said being awarded an OAM was a “beautiful way” of being acknowledged for her service to the community.

But deciding to accept the award came with some harsh commentary from “trolls” on social media.

“I had to think long and hard about receiving that honour in light of things that I’ve said about the monarchy and their role in colonisation,” Narelda said on Blak Matters.

“I’m feeling a sense of pride for my years of service, 23 years in the media, to be recognised in such a beautiful way and my service to the community as well.

“But then 24 hours later, all my Twitter feed, my Twitter is full of trolling from people who was calling me a hypocrite.

“If people looked at what I said, then there would be no trolling.”

Narelda then goes on to discuss her role as a journalist, and if in fact, does she have a responsibility in educating Australia about the referendum.

She said on many occasions she’d been asked to present for events like keynote speeches but was told talking about the Voice to Parliament was “too political” and therefore, she shouldn’t discuss it.

“I think it’s so important to embrace the power of holding a microphone and it’s so important to appreciate the power of our platforms because they will embolden people to educate themselves,” she said.

“It’s a trend now… ‘oh no anything but that because it’s too political’.

“It’s not even political please… it’s a human rights issue.”

Narelda Jacobs OAM is Blak Matters first guest on the LiSTNR podcast. Download the app now to listen to the full conversation she shares with Teela and MC.

Blak Matters provides an inclusive, authentic exploration of First Nations issues from a First Nations perspective. Delivered as an honest but positive conversation between friends, MC & Teela Reid, in under 20 minutes.