Statement on Australia Day
Tuesday 19 September 2023
Bayside City Council has never proposed to change the date of Australia Day.
At its September meeting, Council considered a recommendation from its Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) Advisory Group, which requested that Council write to the Federal Member for Goldstein seeking that the Federal Government consider moving the Australia Day public holiday to another date.
Recommendations from advisory committees do not set Council policy, however, are used to inform Council’s decision making.
Councillors voted unanimously to affirm Council’s commitment, practice and support for Australia Day celebrations on 26 January.
Decisions regarding the date of Australia Day are the responsibility of the Federal Government. Council recognises Australia Day in Bayside through events such as citizenship ceremonies.
Earlier this year, 714 randomly selected representative households in Bayside were asked “Should Council continue to hold events such as citizenship ceremonies on January 26 (Australia Day)” through Council’s 2023 Community Satisfaction Survey.
37% of respondents in the survey were supportive of events such as Citizenship Ceremonies continuing to be held on Australia Day; 21% opposed Council holding events on this date; and 42% were unsure. Bayside City Council has never surveyed the Bayside community regarding changing the date of Australia Day.
Council will write to the Federal Member for Goldstein to advise of Council’s decision to maintain Australia Day celebrations on 26 January.