As part of NAIDOC week celebrations, the Aboriginal flag was flown on the Sydney Harbour Bridge to pay tribute and show solidarity to Australia's First Nations peoples.
While Australians acknowledged the symbolic gesture, they are now calling on the government to have the Aboriginal flag permanently flown on top of the Harbour Bridge all year round.
This was backed in a post by Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore on social media, who acknowledged that while it's been "fantastic" to see the Aboriginal flag during NAIDOC week, "Sydney always was, and always will be Aboriginal land, so the flag should fly above the Harbour Bridge all year round."
On Twitter, Moore also shared a link to an ongoing crowdfunding campaign started by local Kamilaroi woman Cheree Toka — who has been relentlessly gathering signatures and debating the issue in Parliament for the past three years.
Currently, the two flagpoles on the Harbour Bridge are occupied by the Australian National Flag and the NSW State Flag. An exception is made to swap the latter with the Aboriginal Flag on January 26, Sorry Day, Reconciliation Week and NAIDOC Week.
That roughly equates to 19 days — which honestly just isn't enough. The Aboriginal Flag is equal to that of the Australian National flag and shouldn't just be used on "special occasions" — it should be proudly flown all year round.
The Legislative Assembly has responded to Toka's campaign, saying that the addition of an extra flagpole would be too costly. The solution? Toka is funding it herself — so if you would like to support having the Aboriginal Flag permanently flown above the Sydney Harbour Bridge, you can donate, sign the petition or call on decision makers to make this happen.
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