Celebrity·Posted on 12 June 2020Here's What 19 Australian Celebrities Had To Say About Black Lives MatterSome stars have been applauded for using their platforms to enact change, while others have been criticised for simply paying lip service.by Julia WillingBuzzFeed StaffFacebookPinterestTwitterMailLink 1. Chris Hemsworth View this photo on Instagram instagram.com In a statement to his 40 million+ Instagram followers, Chris Hemsworth said: "In light of what’s happening in the US and it being reconciliation week here in Australia, I want to say that I stand with Australia’s First Nations people with solidarity, compassion and love. In a just, equitable and reconciled Australia, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children will have the same life chances and choices as non-Indigenous children, and the length and quality of a person’s life will not be determined by their racial background."He also used his platform to link out to BLM petitions, donations and other resources for protestors around the world.Hemsworth has also previously supported "Change The Date" protests — asking his followers not to celebrate January 26, but rather, recognise the pain and suffering it causes to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. In an earlier statement, he said: "Why do we have to celebrate on a day that for our First Nations people marks such pain, sorrow and deep loss? What if we made this day about reflection and respect for the oldest surviving civilisation, how they may be feeling and come together with solidarity, love and empathy...Changing the date is the first step." 2. Jess Kent View this photo on Instagram instagram.com In a powerful post released to her Instagram, Jess Kent said: "Systemic racism takes on so many shapes and forms — from covert micro-aggressions that can happen in workplaces, supermarkets, the tiniest of social interactions, to the brutal acts of violence we see out in the streets like the murder of George Floyd. The onus is on white people as much as it is POC. As a mixed-race person who walks through this world basically with white privilege, I pledge to do more, and to continue to do so after this is no longer a trending topic."The Aussie musician also attended a Black Lives Matter rally at her hometown of Adelaide on the weekend. 3. Keiynan Lonsdale View this photo on Instagram instagram.com Actor and singer, Keiynan Lonsdale, has used his platform to remind audiences that the Black Lives Matter movement applies not only to heterosexual, cisgender people, but also trans, non-binary, gay, gender-fluid, androgynous, bi, pansexual, lesbian and asexual Black lives too. On his Twitter, Lonsdale has also shared stories of Australia's long and ongoing history of police violence and racism towards Blak people, as well as petitions demanding justice for the senseless death of Black, American woman, Breonna Taylor. 4. Flume View this photo on Instagram instagram.com Flume, real name Harley Edward Streten, has been outspoken on both US and Australian issues when it comes to the Black Lives Matter movement — as well as acknowledging his failings in both spaces. In a statement to his Instagram followers, the musician said: "America isn’t the only place that has work to do. Australia has its own sad and violent history with the treatment of our First Nations people of this country. I personally haven’t done enough to address the ongoing oppression they have endured and have a lot to learn and do."He followed this up with resources on how his followers could support First Nations Australians, as well as sharing relevant documentary recommendations with his US audience. 5. Remy Hii View this photo on Instagram instagram.com As well as donating to the Aboriginal Legal Service and sharing details about upcoming Australian BLM protests with his audience, Remy Hii also shared a very powerful message on the movement: "This search for justice doesn’t end at the marches — it is present in every action and interaction you have for the rest of your life," he said. "The choices you make, the words you speak reverberate into the world we live in, and we all have the responsibility to stamp out injustice when we see it."The actor also shared a moving story about his own experiences growing up in Australia, saying: "When I was young, my mum always told me at school to look out for the quiet ones, the kid with no friends, the kid who was getting bullied and make them your friend. To stand up for the kid that no one would stand up for. When I arrived in Australia as a child, for many years that kid was me. I have never stopped looking out for that child, and I ask you — look out for them." "I am so heartened by the posts of my friends and others on my feed these last weeks sharing positive avenues that we can all participate in, even if you can not march today. I will be sharing some links in my story and feed so that you can donate to worthy causes and make sure that that kid knows their voice matters, their life matters. Black Lives Matter." 6. Jessica Gomes View this photo on Instagram instagram.com Aussie model and philanthropist, Jessica Gomes, has been vocal on her platforms about standing in solidarity with Bla(c)k communities around the world, saying: "[Equality is] something I have always believed in deeply and voiced. I understand what it feels like to be racially discriminated against for what I look like."In her hometown of Los Angeles, Jessica has attended protests, as well as shared resources with her social followings and used her platform to hero commentary from the American Black community. She has yet to comment directly on protests occurring in Australia. 7. Hugh Jackman View this photo on Instagram instagram.com Hugh Jackman has released a statement in support of BLM, saying: "The tragic death of George Floyd has prompted many conversations in my home and with friends around the world. Conversations that are, in large part, long past due." He also touched on the ongoing racial issues affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, saying: "[It's] a timely reminder that what’s happening in the U.S. is happening all over the world, including my home country. "Jackman has also used his platform to amplify voices in the Black community, such as American lawyer, Sherrilyn Ifill, who spoke up on why George Floyd's killing became a tipping point in the US. However, the star has also come under fire for choosing to share a photo of a policeman hugging a Black man protesting — with his followers claiming this type of content detracts from the need to actually hold the police accountable for their ongoing violence and racism aimed at Black communities. 8. Samantha Harris View this photo on Instagram instagram.com Model and World Vision ambassador, Samantha Harris, has reminded her audiences that systemic racism is not just experienced in the US:"Racism is alive and well, not only in America, but right here in our own backyard," she said. "Which [is why] I’ve shared stories about police brutality and deaths in custody in the past.""If it was an everyday citizen that did that to someone, they’d be in jail for murder. Obviously not all police officers act in this manor of brutality and assaulting civilians, but as for the ones that do...someone loses their life. There needs to be consequences, they need to be accountable for their actions. Assault is assault and murder is murder — and it all starts with education on a number of levels." 9. Phoebe Tonkin View this photo on Instagram instagram.com Australian actress and New York resident, Phoebe Tonkin, said: "I think we are all past just posting MLK [Martin Luther King] quotes and instead moving towards activating and demanding real change. It isn’t enough to not be racist, I need to be loudly, foot-stompingly, angrily anti-racist. But I also need to understand these issues on deeper level. And also be prepared to have uncomfortable conversations about these issues as well."Besides attending BLM protests in her hometown of Brooklyn, Tonkin also linked to a document in her profile, compiled by Sarah Sophie Flicker and Alyssa Klein, with a comprehensive list of books, podcasts, articles, aimed at helping "white people to deepen our understanding of what is happening right now."Tonkin also recently shared a statement about the racism experienced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, saying: "My country of Australia has its own violent history of racism, the #blacklivesmatter movement will hopefully also shed light on what has been generations of injustice and racism faced by our First Nations Australians." 10. Devon Terrell View this photo on Instagram instagram.com American-Australia actor, Deven Terrell, took to social media to deliver a moving response to the death of George Floyd: "This has been a heartbreaking few weeks in US history, that paints a very small picture of what the Black community has already known," he said. "I stand by my Black brothers and sisters. We demand change and we deserve justice. Nothing less. And to the beautiful souls that were snatched from us: George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Nina Pop, Ahmaud Arbery, Sean Reed, Tony McDade and countless more. Your names will be heard. Your pain will not be in vain."Terrell also said "Scott Morrison needs to wake up" in response to the prime minster’s claims that "there was no slavery in Australia." 11. Teresa Palmer View this photo on Instagram instagram.com Following a break from social media, actress Teresa Palmer took to Instagram to implore her followers to be better allies to Bla(c)k communities."During the past week of staying muted, I’ve been doing the work to learn and unlearn," she said. "I’ve been listening, exploring, donating, signing, conversing and unpacking it all. I’d like to share with you some resources that I’ve revisited or discovered over the past week — they’ve been hugely impactful. There are many, many more resources out there, not just for tackling the racial discrimination and police brutality issues in America, but also the issues we face here at home in Australia. Black Lives Matter. Indigenous Lives Matter."You can view all the resources here. 12. Shanina Shaik View this photo on Instagram instagram.com Aussie-born and US-based model, Shanina Shaik, has been using her platform to raise awareness of the importance of voting amongst her American following — in order to make real change. "I’m not an American citizen, so unfortunately I’m unable to vote," she said. "I will do my part and stand with all of you to create change, to educate myself and others, to use my voice and ask for equality and justice. [But] we need change! It’s so important to go out there and vote. Local and state elections are important because they can create change for future policies and changes within your communities."Shaik, who is of Lithuanian and Pakistani descent, also spoke on the way she has personally experienced discrimination, saying: "I have dealt with racism many times and I will continue to educate and help where I can." She has yet to comment directly on any matters affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. 13. Cody Simpson View this photo on Instagram instagram.com Cody Simpson has been outspoken when it comes to the death of George Floyd and the US protests — sharing past interviews and sound bites of prominent Black American voices, such as Martin Luther King, James Baldwin and Angela Davis.However, the Aussie singer has also been criticised for not directly speaking out about the same issues that are so prevalent in Australian society — with his followers calling for him to acknowledge the ongoing suffering of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. 14. Tame Impala View this photo on Instagram instagram.com In a lengthy statement posted to his Instagram, Tame Impala, real name Kevin Parker, reflected on the ways George Floyd's death helped him better understand his own privilege.Parker said: "I [have] realised all the ways being white (and male) has advantaged me in life — all the way from being described as 'psychedelic Jesus', to getting pulled over by the police and not getting assaulted. Which isn’t even counting the ways I haven’t learned yet — and the ways I may never know, that happen in my life everyday...I just learned yesterday that, on average, once a month an Indigenous Australian dies in police custody. That’s a terrible statistic to learn and quite unacceptable."The musician then shared a link to the charities that he was donating to in order to help provide further support to Bla(c)k communities and called for his followers to do the same. 15. Claire Holt View this photo on Instagram instagram.com "I’ve been at a loss for words all week — my heart is so heavy and I am devastated by what’s happening in the country I call home," said actress, Claire Holt, in a post to her 5 million+ followers. "I’ve been afraid to post anything. Afraid that I will appear ignorant or self righteous — who am I to speak on such an incredibly significant topic as a privileged white woman? But it isn’t enough to grieve for the Black community in silence. I want to learn. I want to understand. I want to be better. As I hold my son close, my heart aches for the mothers and fathers who have lost children to such senseless racism. It aches knowing that they must raise their babies to fear those who are supposed to protect us. I stand with you and I will not stay quiet."Holt also pinned a gallery of relevant stories and resources to her Instagram, highlighting places to donate to, accounts to follow, an anti-racist booklist, as well as sharing Black-owned businesses that have been affected by the protests. She has yet to comment on Australia's protests. 16. Dacre Montgomery View this photo on Instagram instagram.com Stranger Things star, Dacre Montgomery, posted on his Instagram: "I am deeply moved by the events happening in the US over the last few weeks. In solidarity with my friends in the US and in support of the Black Lives Matter and larger racial justice movements, I am committed to learning and to listening. We are living through a time of monumental change."He then included a snapshot of how allies could help the movement, linking to a range of organisations supporting protests, as well as sharing the link to the petition of Justice For George Floyd. Montgomery has yet to directly comment on the same issues affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. 17. Miranda Kerr View this photo on Instagram instagram.com Miranda Kerr has said that now is the time to "better support, listen and amplify Black voices." As part of her support, Kerr has been conducting interviews with prominent people in the Black, American community, such as Mayor of Stockton, Michael Tubbs, and actor Nichelle Hines.However, Kerr has also come under fire for not directly addressing the racism and violence experienced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as well. 18. Margot Robbie View this photo on Instagram instagram.com As well as sharing donation resources and raising awareness of the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, Margot Robbie also used her 20 million strong platform to link to an Anti-racist Reading List.However, the actress has yet to comment specifically on any racial issues affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. 19. And finally, Yvonne Strahovski View this photo on Instagram instagram.com Handmaid's Tale actress, Yvonne Strahovski, shared multiple statements to her Instagram on the BLM movement, saying: "I stand with my friends and anyone who experiences and has experienced the daily and ongoing injustice of hatred and racism. I do not know what this is like. But I do know that this is horrific. Enough is enough already.""The people who choose to comment and say things like 'can’t we just move on already?' Please, please get online and educate yourself. Please. You are only perpetuating the issue here. Get familiar with what exactly #blacklivesmatter means. And white privilege. We all need to step up and LEARN and LISTEN and support each other right now. Please become part of the solution with respect and kindness."Strahovski has also yet to speak directly on the BLM protests currently happening in Australia.