Let’s hear what mob have to say about January 26

Jan 24, 2023

Invasion Day, Survival Day, Day of Mourning.

Community has a range of views on January 26. But whichever way you look at it, it’s a painful day for our people. January 26 is a date that divides and excludes, rather than unites us. And that’s why it’s not a date to celebrate.

We are seeing more and more allies join us in solidarity against January 26. Treaty can strengthen the relationship between First Nations people and all Victorians and will create opportunities for truth-telling and healing. 

Treaty will give us something we can all celebrate and be proud of.

Now, let’s hear what mob have to say about January 26…

“Every year ‘Australia Day’ is celebrated on the 26th is another year I feel robbed of joining celebrations. I want to celebrate all of the great things about our country like everyone else but how can I do that when it always has and always will be a day of pain and mourning.”

Levi Power, Yorta Yorta

“I feel anxious leading up to the date, and then on the day I feel sad, angry, excluded & unsafe.”

Rebecca Welsh, Wamba Wamba

“It is a day of mourning and sadness for our people. There is definitely room for a day to celebrate the country and everyone who lives here but Jan 26 is not the day.”

Jordan Knight, Yorta Yorta

“The 26th of January ‘Australia Day’ celebrations disrespect my ancestors and Elders who have fought to stay alive ever since the first fleet arrived. The date represents nothing but pain and atrocities inflicted on my people.”

Narida Miller, Yorta Yorta

“How can we move on and heal…when the nation celebrates Country they stole off us.”

Melissa Jones, Latje Latje, Wotjabuluk

“Australia Day should be celebrated but only when there is a Treaty…It should not be celebrated on the day when non-Aboriginal people came to our shores and moved our people off their Country.”

Aunty Esme Bamblett, Bangerang, Wiradjuri and Taungurung

“If there was an appropriate day to celebrate colonisation, Jan 26th is definitely not the day for it.”

Elias Jarvis, Djab-Wurrung, Gunditjmara

“I do celebrate Australia Day on the 26th but it’s a different celebration to white Australia: I celebrate the SURVIVAL of the Aboriginal peoples because it’s truly a miracle that any of us are still here.”

Trevor Gallagher, Gunditjmara

“On January 26, like every year, I will think of my Ancestors – their strength, their courage and how they fought and sacrificed so much to give me a better life than what they were given.”

Tracey Evans, Gunditjmara

“REMEMBER!! Don’t forget the fight…”

Jarvis Atkinson, Yorta Yorta