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Australian National Flag Day: 3 September 2006:



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David Hawker MP Federal Member for Wannon Electorate Office: 190 Gray Street, Hamilton, Vic., 3300 Ph: (03) 5572 1100 or Local Call 1300 131 692 Fax: (03) 55 72 1141 Email: David.Hawker.MP@aph.gov.au Web: www.davidhawker.com.au

Media Release The Hon David Hawker MP Speaker of the House of Representatives Federal Member for Wannon

28 August 2006

AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL FLAG DAY - 3 SEPTEMBER 2006

Federal Member for Wannon, David Hawker, today called for all Western Victorians to celebrate the 105th birthday of the Australian National Flag on Australian National Flag Day this Sunday, 3rd September.

“Australian National Flag day commemorates the first occasion, on 3rd September 1901, that the flag which became today’s Australian National Flag was flown,” Mr Hawker said.

“On that day, Prime Minister Edmund Barton announced the result of a worldwide competition to select a flag for the newly federated nation. From over 32,000 entries, equal first place was awarded to five almost identical designs, which were submitted by an artist, an optician’s apprentice, an architect, a ship’s officer and a schoolboy.”

Mr Hawker said that the three elements in the flag’s design each represent part of our heritage as a nation.

“The Union Jack acknowledges Australia’s historical links with Great Britain, the seven-pointed Commonwealth Star symbolises the unity of Australia’s six states and its territories, and the Southern Cross, visible only in the skies of the Southern Hemisphere, is a reminder of Australia’s location in the world,” he said.

In the 105 years since it was first unfurled, the Australian National Flag has been embraced by the Australian people and has become an expression of Australian identity. Today, it is flown at community buildings, business premises and private homes. It is carried in processions, waved at parades and even worn to public events. As Australia’s foremost national symbol, it acts as a popular focus of pride in times of celebration and a powerful symbol of unity in times of sorrow.

“Australian National Flag Day provides an opportunity to celebrate the significance and symbolism of our flag, and I encourage you to mark Australian National Flag Day by flying or displaying the Australian National Flag on 3rd September,” Mr Hawker said.

To coincide with Australian National Flag Day, a 3rd edition of Australian Flags is being published for distribution through the Constituents’ Request programme. The book can be used as an educational resource by the Australian community, flag marshals and visitors to Australia. Copies are available free of charge from Mr Hawker’s office at 190 Gray Street Hamilton, or by calling 1300 131 692.

Further information on the Australian National Flag and the Commonwealth Flag Network is available at www.itsanhonour.gov.au.

-ENDS-

Media contact: Jane Templeton (03) 5572 1100