MEDIA RELEASE

Citizenship ceremonies

MC 1/19

Senator the Hon. Mathias Cormann
Acting Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs
Minister for Finance and the Public Service
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Senator for Western Australia

Date: Wednesday, 16 January 2019

All federal Members of Parliament are currently authorised by the Minister, via legislative instrument, to preside over a citizenship ceremony.

In practice, to be effective, ceremonies conducted by a federal Member of Parliament must be carried out in consultation with the Department of Home Affairs and in accordance with the requirements of the Australian Citizenship Ceremonies Code.

It is the longstanding position of the Australian Government that citizenship ceremonies are non-commercial, apolitical, non-partisan and secular.

The Australian Citizenship Ceremonies Code states that ceremonies must not be used as forums for political, partisan or religious expression or for the distribution of material, which could be perceived to be of a commercial, political or religious nature.

Any individual or organisation found to be in breach, or making it clear that they intend to breach the Code, may have their authorisation to preside at citizenship ceremonies revoked by the Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs.

As our government has done with two local councils already, the Minister can revoke a person’s or an organisation’s authorisation to conduct citizenship ceremonies, by changing the relevant legislative instrument.

[ENDS]

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