Australia Day Message
26 January 2015
Today, across Australia, at BBQs, citizenship ceremonies and community events, we will celebrate everything that is good about our country.
Australia Day celebrates the ties that bind us, the values that sustain us and the nation that we have become.
Modern Australia has an Aboriginal heritage, a British foundation and a multicultural character.
So on Australia Day, we honour the ancestors who were custodians of this ancient continent; we pay tribute to our forefathers who enshrined freedom, fairness and unity in Australia’s Constitution; and we reaffirm our commitment to make this country of ours a beacon of hope and optimism in an uncertain world.
Because to be an Australian is to have won the lottery of life.
But we can’t rest on our laurels and everyone has a part to play in sustaining a country that is strong and prosperous, free and fair.
Today, thousands of new Australian citizens will take the pledge to live our values and to join our team, following in the footsteps of our first modern migrants who arrived way back on 26 January 1788.
This year we will also commemorate the centenary of the Gallipoli campaign. I hope everyone will participate in some way.
We will also continue working towards completing our Constitution by recognising the first Australians. This spirit of generous inclusion has always marked our nation at its best.
So today, we celebrate the history that has made us who we are; the country that we love and the values and institutions that underpin it.
I wish every one of you a very happy Australia Day!