Stan Grant has harshly criticized the Australian media and the treatment of Indigenous journalists during the Voice to Parliament referendum.
The former ABC presenter officially resigned from the public broadcaster in August, months after he was placed on leave following a barrage of racist abuse.
He has since started a new career as a journalism professor at Monash University in Melbourne.
Speaking at CONVERGE, First Nations Media Australia’s annual conference in Canberra, Grant highlighted what he saw as negative attributes of his former job.
“We should not hide behind the lies of objectivity and neutrality,” he told participants on Tuesday.
Former ABC presenter Stan Grant (above) accused the Australian media of hiding “behind the lies of objectivity and neutrality” during the Voice to Parliament referendum
Grant criticized the treatment of Indigenous journalists during the Voice to Parliament referendum, who he said were criticized for telling the truth.
“We have been accused of discord and our claims have been trivialized,” he said.
Grant said this treatment contradicted how claimed colonization had benefited Indigenous Australians.
He said the media had taken the truth and “Yindyamarra” and “turned it into hate.”
Yindyamarra is a word from the language of the Wiradjuri people of central New South Wales and broadly means “respect”.
“It remains a hostile environment.” [for those who want to tell the truth] … it has brought poison into the bloodstream of society,” he said.
Grant resigned as moderator of the question-and-answer session in May after he was subjected to “relentless racial vitriol” following his appearance on a panel discussion about colonialism in the run-up to King Charles’ coronation.
Grant (pictured with his wife Tracey Holmes) left the ABC in August after receiving racist backlash for his colonization comments ahead of King Charles’ coronation in May
The motivation for his departure was relentless pressure from the media over his references to the negative effects of colonization, as well as a lack of support from ABC management.
Indigenous Affairs Minister Linda Burney also spoke at the Canberra conference, which runs until Thursday.
Like Grant, she had to criticize the media after the overwhelming rejection of the referendum.
“I think the media needs to look at itself and see how this issue has been handled,” she said.
“We are almost in a post-truth era and that is so crucial for the media.”
She also said more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander journalists were needed in the press box in Canberra.
“This is about life, about change for our people, not just something interesting for people every other day.” [to watch].’
Grant (above) has since been appointed as the first director of the Constructive Institute for the Asia Pacific at Monash University
Monash University has since announced that Grant has been appointed as the first Director of the Constructive Institute for the Asia-Pacific region in its Faculty of Arts.
In this role, Grant will lead projects and debates that “include global solutions, nuance and dialogue with newsroom cultures.”
He will also take on a dual role as professor of journalism.