Thousands become Oz citizens on Australia Day

More than 27,000 people marked this Australia Day by becoming Australian citizens – the largest ever number to make the pledge on 26th January.

Acting Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs Alan Tudge congratulated the tens of thousands who were scheduled to attend 454 ceremonies around the nation.

“Australia Day is an opportunity to celebrate our success as a multicultural nation and reflect on what it means to be an Australia,” Mr Tudge said. “Citizenship is a chance for new migrants to make a pledge to uphold our laws and values and contribute to our cohesive, open and inclusive society.

“A citizenship ceremony is an important event in every new citizens’ life and being able to attend one on Australia Day adds extra significance.”

Australia Day is the most popular day for people to attend a citizenship ceremony, with 100,000 people becoming Australian citizens on Australia’s national day in the past six years.

In September 2019, the Morrison Government amended the Australian Citizenship Ceremonies Code to require councils to hold a citizenship ceremony on Australia Day.

Every council required to hold a ceremony is doing so and almost 140 councils who would be exempt under the code have chosen to hold a ceremony anyway.

“This is the first time we are requiring councils to hold citizenship ceremonies on Australia Day,” Mr Tudge said. “We want them to do the right thing as it is the most popular day for new migrants to become an Aussie. This is the day that all of us can celebrate, whether born here or only just becoming a citizen.”

The Government reached out to all councils affected by the recent bushfires, but all have indicated they are going ahead with their ceremonies in recognition of their importance to new citizens and the wider community.

More than 106,000 people have been welcomed as new Australian citizens in the last six months.

Between 1st July and 31st December 2019, 106,704 people were conferred with Australian citizenship, up from 48,983 in the same period in 2018.

We at Emigrate2 hope that all Australians – both old and new – enjoyed a fantastic Australia Day.

Article published 27th January 2020