January 26 in Merri-bek
In September 2017, Merri-bek City Council resolved to no longer refer to January 26 as Australia Day. Council believes that our celebration of national identity should be held on a date that is inclusive of everyone in our community.
Celebrations held on January 26 are known to have a negative impact on many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples who experience the day as a sad and painful day.
Council is now an active member of the Change the Date campaign, along with the cities of Darebin and Yarra, to encourage the Federal Government to find another day that will bring all Australians together to celebrate our country.
Council’s decision not to recognise January 26 as a day of celebration does not impact the way our residents personally choose to spend the day. Council continues to hold citizenship ceremonies whilte advocating to change the date so all Australians can celebrate.
Moreland City Council encourages people to reflect about what this date means in the history of our nation and its effect on our Aboriginal community.
Find out more:
- January 26 FAQs – A guide for the community (PDF 612Kb)
- Finding a more inclusive date than January 26 – article by Sue Atkinson and Liz Phillips (PDF 478Kb)
- Minutes of the Council meeting, September 2017 (DOC 413Kb), see item NOM55/17 Supporting the campaign to change the date of Australia Day (D17/326827)
- Learn more about the Indigenous History of Merri-bek
- For the latest on the #Changethedate campaign follow the Change The Date Yarra Facebook page.
- Download Frequently Asked Questions on why Merri-bek Council is changing the way it marks January 26 (DOC 35Kb)
- Download suggestions for how to approach January 26 respectfully or how to support Change the Date campaign (DOC 46Kb)
For more information contact the Social Policy and Community Development team on 9240 1111