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Wednesday, 8 February 2017
Page: 339

Senator DI NATALE (VictoriaLeader of the Australian Greens) (16:20): I seek leave to make a short statement.

The PRESIDENT: Leave is granted for one minute.

Senator DI NATALE: We do not support this motion. We should have a day where we celebrate this great country of ours, celebrate its magnificent Indigenous history and celebrate the many waves of migration that followed, but 26 January, the day of dispossession, is not that day. Our entire national wealth was built from that moment, but we still have not paid the rent—no treaty, no constitutional recognition and very little progress. Celebrating on 26 January is an insult to the owners of this land from whom we have taken so much but given so little.

The Greens do not want to see the Australian flag burn because we do not believe that is how you change hearts and minds but we sure as hell do not believe that people should be locked up for it. By the way, it is about time we changed the flag while we are at it. The motion cites a poll. I would be wary of citing polls, because you know what happened last time the coalition got worried about polls? They changed their leader.