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LISMORE COUNCIL WARNED NOT TO CHANGE AUSTRALIA DAY

The department for Immigration and Border Protection has threatened to revoke Lismore City Council’s right to hold citizenship ceremonies, if it changes the date of its Australia Day celebrations.

In a strongly-worded letter, Assistant Minister Alex Hawke stressed councils must not use citizenship ceremonies as a promotional tool for an anti-national day event.

It comes three weeks after Councillor Vanessa Ekins moved a motion for council to consider changing the date.

“It’s a bit of chest-beating by the Federal Government – I think they’re feeling a bit on the back-foot but what we’re trying to do in Lismore is start a conversation with our community”

Lismore is one of a handful of councils across the country, looking into alternative dates for Australia Day celebrations.

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