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A Multicultural Australia

All Australians share the benefits and responsibilities arising from the cultural, linguistic and religious diversity of our society.

Australia's Multicultural Policy


Australia's new multicultural policy was launched by the government on 16 February 2011.

Programs and Publications


he government's cultural diversity programs and publications.

Whole-of-Government approach
!nformation on Australian government agencies" contributions to building social cohesion.

Australian Multicultural Council


he Australian #ulticultural $ouncil was officially launched by the %rime #inister, the &on 'ulia (illard #%, on 22 August 2011 at %arliament &ouse in $anberra.

Australian Multicultural Advisory Council


he former Australian #ulticultural Advisory $ouncil advised the #inister for !mmigration and $iti)enship and the %arliamentary *ecretary for !mmigration and #ulticultural Affairs on issues related to Australia's cultural diversity.

Harmony Day
&armony +ay is celebrated around Australia on 21 #arch. !t is a day where all Australians celebrate cultural diversity and is also the ,nited -ation"s !nternational +ay for the .limination of /acial +iscrimination. !t's about community participation, inclusiveness and respect 0 a time to reflect on where Australia has come from, while also recognising the traditional owners of the land.

Calendar of Cultural and eligious Dates


A calendar of cultural, religious and national days and events.

Diversity and !ocial Cohesion Program

he +iversity and *ocial $ohesion %rogram 1incorporating the former +iverse Australia %rogram and the -ational Action %lan to 2uild on *ocial $ohesion, &armony and *ecurity community grants3 aims to provide an environment in which all Australians can develop a full sense of belonging and participate and contribute to Australian society.

Australian Government
Australia has three levels of government 4 the federal Australian (overnment, the governments of the si5 states and two territories, and around 600 local government authorities. Australia has been a nation with a single national government since 1 'anuary 1701. Although it is divided into states and territories which have their own state governments, we are all united as one nation. Australia is a constitutional monarchy with 8ueen .li)abeth !! of the ,nited 9ingdom as its head of state, which is why Australia's national flag comprises the ,nion 'ac: 1along with the $ommonwealth *tar and the *outhern $ross3. he 8ueen appoints the (overnor;(eneral of Australia as her representative on the advice of the elected Australian (overnment. he (overnor;(eneral appoints ministers on the advice of the %rime #inister. Australia"s system of government is based on the liberal democratic tradition, which includes religious tolerance and freedom of speech and association. he Australian $onstitution sets out the functions of the Australian (overnment, such as foreign relations and trade, defence and immigration. *tates and territories are responsible for matters not assigned to the federal government. here are two ma<or political groups that usually form government, federally and in the states= the Australian >abor %arty, and the $oalition which is a formal grouping of the >iberal %arty and its minor partner, the -ational %arty. his ma<ority party or coalition becomes the government, decided at an election by Australian citi)ens. he other ma<or political party or coalition is called ?the opposition".

Cities" states and territories


Australia is divided into si5 states and two territories. $anberra is the national capital and the centre of government. !t is located appro5imately 270 :ilometres south of *ydney in the Australian $apital erritory 1A$ 3. $anberra lies on the ancient lands of the !ndigenous -gunnawal people, and its name is thought to mean ?meeting place", from the Aboriginal word ?9amberra". !t is home to important national institutions, including the Australian %arliament and the &igh $ourt of Australia.

-ew *outh @ales is Australia"s oldest and most populated state. !t was originally settled as a penal colony on the shores of %ort 'ac:son where the bustling capital city of *ydney now stands. #ore than a third of Australians live in -ew *outh @ales, and *ydney is the nation"s largest city. Aictoria is the smallest of the mainland states in si)e but the second most populated. #elbourne is the capital and is Australia"s second most populated city. +uring the gold rush of the 1BC0s, it became one of the world's largest and wealthiest cities. #elbourne is sometimes referred to as the Dcultural capital of AustraliaD and is the birthplace of Australian film, television, art, dance and music. Aictorians" enthusiasm for sport is also legendary and this is where Australian /ules football began. 8ueensland is Australia"s second;largest state in si)e. he state capital is 2risbane, the third most populated city in Australia. 8ueenslanders en<oy more winter sunshine and warmth than most other Australian states and it"s perfect for all types of outdoor activities and water sports. 8ueensland is also home to the world famous (reat 2arrier /eef as well as five @orld &eritage listed areas. *outh Australia is a state in the southern central part of the country which covers some of the most arid parts of the continent. !t is the fourth largest of Australia's states and shares its borders with all of the mainland states and the -orthern erritory. he state capital is Adelaide, the fifth;largest city in Australia. *outh Australia has a thriving arts scene and is sometimes :nown as the ?Festival *tate", with more than C00 festivals ta:ing place there every year. At the top end of Australia lies the -orthern erritory. +arwin, on the northern coast, is the capital, and Alice *prings the principal inland town. Alice *prings is the physical heart of Australia, almost e5actly at the nation's geographical centre. he -orthern erritory is home to the famous ,luru 1Ayers /oc:3, 9ata <uta 1the Elgas3 and 9a:adu -ational %ar:. @estern Australia is Australia"s largest state by area. About three;Fuarters of the state"s population live in the capital %erth, which is the fourth most populated city in Australia. he east of the state is mostly desert while to the west the state is bound by almost 1G000 :ilometres of pristine coastline. !n the 1B70s gold was discovered and mining is still one of the state"s biggest industries. asmania is separated from mainland Australia by 2ass *trait and is the smallest state in Australia. he capital, &obart, was founded in 1B0H as a penal colony, and is Australia's second oldest capital city after *ydney. Ene;fifth of asmania is covered by national par:s and wilderness areas. !t is one of the world's most mountainous islands whose geology reflects Australia"s connection millions of years ago with Antarctica. Australia also administers Ashmore and $artier !slands, $hristmas !sland, the $ocos 1or 9eeling3 !slands, the $oral *ea !slands, &eard and #c+onald !slands, -orfol: !sland and the Australian Antarctic erritory 1covering H2 per cent of the Antarctic continent3 as e5ternal territories.