Victorians will today pay tribute to the sacrifice of thousands of Aboriginal service men and women.
The seventeenth annual Victorian Aboriginal Remembrance Service is a time to reflect on the sacrifice, dedication, and loyalty of Aboriginal people who have served, or who are currently serving, in the Australian Defence Force.
The service, held annually during Reconciliation Week recognises the significant contributions of First Nations Victorians, and acknowledges that for far too long these sacrifices were not adequately commemorated.
Elder Aunty Dot Peters first initiated the service in 2006 to honour Aboriginal Victorians who, for more than a century, have served in every conflict and peace keeping mission involving the Australian military.
The service today also recognises 100 years of service from the Royal Australian Air Force in 2021, and the sacrifices of Aboriginal Air Force people throughout a century of conflict.
Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Gabrielle Williams and Minister for Veterans Shaun Leane will join the Victorian Aboriginal Remembrance Committee in recognising the sacrifice and service of First Nations Victorians.
Members of the public are also encouraged to attend, with the service commencing at 11am at the Shrine of Remembrance. The event will also be livestreamed.
Quotes attributable to the Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Gabrielle Williams
“The Victorian Aboriginal Remembrance Service is an opportunity for us to recognise the service and sacrifice of Aboriginal Victorians who have proudly served Australia in conflicts for over a century.”
“Recognising and understanding the histories, achievements and immense sacrifices of First Nations Victorians in all fields of service is an important step towards reconciliation.”
Quotes attributable to the Minister for Veterans Shaun Leane
“Today’s Victorian Aboriginal Remembrance Service is an important opportunity for us to reflect upon the strength and resilience of the thousands of Aboriginal service people.”
“We owe a great debt of gratitude to Aboriginal veterans, their families and communities, and today we honour their sacrifice.”
Reviewed 31 May 2022