26 May, 2017

National Sorry Day and National Reconciliation Week

National Sorry Day acknowledges and raises awareness of the history and continued effect of the forced removal of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people from their families, communities and culture. National Reconciliation Week celebrates and builds on the respectful relationships shared by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and other Australians.

This year also commemorates the 50th Anniversary of the 1967 referendum, the 25th Anniversary of the Mabo High Court decision and the 20th Anniversary of the Bringing Them Home report.

Flying the Indigenous Flags on National Sorry Day and throughout National Reconciliation Week recognises the significance of these events for all Australians and is a sign of respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and culture. From Friday 26 May to Saturday 3 June 2017 the Australian Aboriginal Flag and the Torres Strait Islander Flag should be flown on additional flagpoles, where available, next to or near the Australian National Flag on Australian Government buildings and establishments. Other organisations are encouraged to follow this protocol.

If there is only one flagpole available at a flag station the Australian Aboriginal Flag or the Torres Strait Islander Flag should not replace the Australian National Flag. If two flagpoles are available, it is at the discretion of the authority concerned to determine which of the two flags is flown with the Australian National Flag. The Australian Aboriginal Flag and the Torres Strait Islander Flag have equal status and may be flown in any order after the Australian National Flag.

Should it be the practice to fly other flags at the flag station, please refer to the Order of Precedence for flying the Australian National Flag along with other flags, which can be found in the ‘Australian Flags’ booklet (http://www.dpmc.gov.au/sites/default/files/publications/australian-flags-excerpt.pdf).

The financial and staffing implications arising from weekend flag marshal duties are the responsibility of each organisation.

Thank you for your attention to this matter. Please contact the Protocol Unit on 8429 5135 if you require further information.


For more information

Protocol Unit