Sign In

The Constitution

Text Size a a a Print Print this page
Constitution Act 1889.
Constitution Act 1889.
The Consitution Act 1889 set up a system of parliamentary self government in the colony. It is the founding document of the bicameral Parliament of Western Australia. 

The 1889 Constitution Act gave Western Australia the framework for a parliamentary system of self-government.

A new Legislative Assembly, or ``lower house", was added to a remodeled Legislative Council, or ``upper house", to form a parliament. The power to govern was substantially transferred from the Governor to the elected members.

The new Western Australian Constitution was supposed to herald an era of progress and prosperity for all.

In reality, not everyone could vote, let alone stand as a candidate, for the new Parliament.

The new Constitution still restricted the vote to men who owned or leased property: in other words, the wealthier people in society. 

Most men in the colony, all women and Aboriginal people had no political rights at all.




Acknowledgement of Country

The Government of Western Australia acknowledges the traditional custodians throughout Western Australia and their continuing connection to the land, waters and community. We pay our respects to all members of the Aboriginal communities and their cultures; and to Elders both past and present.