January 23, 2024

On the 26th of January 2024 we mark Australia Day, a day where we acknowledge our country’s past, recognise our achievements, and look forward to the future.

On our nation’s national day, right around the country new Australians are welcomed at citizenship ceremonies, the Australia Day Honours List of Australians who have achieved great things for their community is announced, barbecues are fired up, and rubbish bins become cricket stumps as we come together to enjoy the company of family, friends, and neighbours.

Australia Day is not just another public holiday. It is our nation’s biggest annual civic event. 81 per cent of respondents in the recent Wide Bay 2023 Survey said they want to continue to celebrate Australia Day on the 26th of January.

The 26th of January is a day to reflect on our history, our Indigenous culture and heritage, a day to respect the origins, experiences, stories, and contributions of our fellow Australians, to celebrate our strong and diverse community and honour this great nation, our achievements, and the people who have helped shape the Australia we have become.

While we all have different views, backgrounds, and experiences, Australia Day is a day to respect and share the stories, histories, and contributions of every Australian – like the ones people throughout Wide Bay have made, and continue to make, to our nation.

Thanks to the sacrifices, the hard work of those who have gone before us, and those who have served and continue to serve to secure our freedom, Australia is one of the safest, most economically stable countries in the world, with many opportunities ahead.

Australia’s success today is built upon the uniquely Aussie characteristics for which we are known throughout the world, of our courage, tenacity, mateship, and our unwavering optimism. The Australian spirit we share is known for its inclusiveness, compassion, and the sheer hard work that has gone towards making Australia strong.

As Australians, we know that our country is what we make of it, and that is why for most of my life I have worked to make our communities and our nation even better. I have seen the good and bad in society, and I acknowledge the work we must continue to do to keep our communities safe, our borders secure, and protect our Australian way of life.

I will keep up my fight to build a better Wide Bay, and to ensure that our nation’s future holds prosperity and growth for all.

Whether you plan to celebrate with loved ones and friends at a public ceremony, or if you choose to commemorate the occasion at home, I hope you fly the Aussie flag with pride, stay safe, and enjoy the day with your fellow Australians.


In the spirit of Australia, I acknowledge all citizens who contribute to making our nation the greatest on earth.

I acknowledge our defence force personnel, past, present, and emerging, for their service to our nation, and particularly those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the defence of Australia.

I also acknowledge the Australian taxpayers who, through their hard work, pay for the infrastructure, health, education, and emergency services that keep our proud nation healthy, safe, and prosperous.