Honouring our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander veterans

A commemorative service at Sydney’s Anzac Memorial has today honoured Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander veterans and Defence personnel.

Minister for Veterans John Sidoti and Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Don Harwin joined the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Veterans and Services Association at the Anzac Memorial to recognise the outstanding service of Indigenous Australian servicemen and women.

Mr Sidoti said today’s commemoration acknowledges the vital role that Indigenous men and women continue to have in keeping our country safe in military operations right across the globe.

“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders have served in all conflicts and peacekeeping missions involving Australia since the Boer War in 1899. Today, all Australians stand together to honour their service and sacrifice,” Mr Sidoti said.

Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Don Harwin said the service provided a poignant moment to reflect on the service record of Indigenous Australians.

“While Australia is a proud nation which honours its servicemen and women, we have not always acknowledged everyone equally,” Mr Harwin said.

“It is important that we take a moment to reflect on the previous and ongoing contribution of Indigenous Australians to our Defence Force”.

Uncle Harry Allie BEM, RAAF Elder and Chair of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Veterans and Services Association welcomed the commemoration. “Today we commemorated and acknowledged our Indigenous brothers and sisters who have served and sacrificed for Australia in every major conflict since the Boer War,” Mr Allie said.

“Thank you to the NSW Government, RSL NSW and our other contributors for their support of this important commemoration.”

 

MEDIA: Nicolle Nasr | Minister Sidoti | 0448 194 163

Chris Lawrence | Minister Harwin | 0439 434 863