House debates

Wednesday, 24 October 2018

Constituency Statements

National Flag Day

10:08 am

Photo of Karen AndrewsKaren Andrews (McPherson, Liberal Party, Minister for Industry) Share this | | Hansard source

Like many of my colleagues in this place, one of my very great honours and duties is to distribute Australian flags to local schools, community groups and individuals in my electorate who request them. These flags are proudly carried to all corners of the globe by exchange students. They are proudly flown at RSLs and at nursing homes. They are proudly carried and raised by school students every day of the school year. Increasingly, they're proudly displayed in community halls and in a variety of businesses.

Last month, on National Flag Day, 3 September, I distributed information booklets to my local schools about our flag. They were warmly received. I know that many schools took the opportunity to celebrate National Flag Day and discuss the origin, history and meaning of our flag. It's important that this sort of civics education is part of what our students learn at school. In the past few weeks, I was delighted to visit both Hillcrest Christian College and Elanora State School in my electorate to present them with an Australian flag. It's really heartening to see the excitement that this generation of school students has about our flag and what it symbolises. I know that, in many schools, students vie for the honour of being tasked with raising and lowering the flag each day. It's a leadership opportunity they take on with great pride.

I do want to put on the record today my unwavering support for our Australian flag. Our flag is part of our national identity. It's an enduring visual connection to our past, to the soldiers who fought under that banner for our freedom, to the sports people who received their medals as our flag flew, to the generations of students before us who raised our flag and sang the anthem and grew to contribute to our nation. It's really heartening to see that our flag is so prominently displayed at many of our celebrations and commemorations—on Australia Day, on Anzac Day, and on Remembrance Day. There's no doubt it is a symbol of unity and pride, and I'm proud to be one of the many Australians who have pride in our national flag.