It’s a discussion we have every January, but Tasmania has demonstrated how seriously they take some people’s grievances with Australia Day’s current date by making Hobart the first capital city to make real changes to move the day.
In a reportedly heated council meeting last night, the Hobart City Council voted to make it a priority to consider changing the date of the Hobart citizenship ceremony, to consult the Aboriginal community for a better date as well as write to the Federal Government to lobby a date change.
However, this wasn’t an easily reached outcome, with the Lord Mayor Sue Hickey among one of several alderman opposing the move, according to The Mercury.
The Lord Mayor said she was happy to petition the Government asking to change the hotly-contested date, but she had issues with the first two parts of the motion - namely moving the citizenship ceremonies.
“I see so many people from so many different countries who are thrilled to have their citizen date on that day,” she said.
“This is a headline-grabbing motion.”
Earlier this year, Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt attempted to move Australia Day festivities to another date but was met with fierce backlash, mainly from local businesses who were concerned they would lose money from the change.
The council was also forced to reinstate its January 26 citizenship ceremony by the government, meaning little was changed to the events of the day, but they did celebrate One Day in Fremantle on the 28th of January to “celebrate multicultural diversity and passion for our country”.