Allan Woodward objects to the inclusion of Islamic people (front drawing) on this year’s Australia Day colouring pages for kids while Aboriginal people are absent.
Allan Woodward objects to the inclusion of Islamic people (front drawing) on this year’s Australia Day colouring pages for kids while Aboriginal people are absent. Jocelyn Watts

Aborigines forgotten on Aus Day?

IT’S A SAD reflection on today’s society when Islamic people appear on kids’ Australia Day colouring pages but Aboriginal people do not, says Allan Woodward of Maryborough.

The Rotary Club of Maryborough Sunrise stalwart is refusing to distribute the colouring pages from the Australia Day National Network website at this year’s celebration in Maryborough in protest.

“The colouring pages this year do not feature Aborigines but on two occasions favour Islamic people,” Mr Woodward said.

“Sure, we are a multicultural society but that includes our own Aboriginal people who are not fairly represented in this group of drawings.”

In past years Mr Woodward has relied on the Network’s website for colouring pages, quizzes and word puzzles to distribute to children from the Rotary van during the Australia Day celebrations.

Mr Woodward said one argument against including Aborigines could be that indigenous people view January 26 as the anniversary of the European invasion of their land.

“But that’s garbage ... particularly in view of reconciliation.”

The Australia Day National Network, whose mission is to “inspire national pride and spirit to enrich the life of the nation”, is made up of hundreds of local councils and committees, eight state and territory Australia Day organisations and the National Australia Day Council.

The website reads: “Australia Day is a day for all Australians, indigenous and non-indigenous, to celebrate what makes us great, to consider where we’ve come from, where we are now and what kind of a future we want to build together.”

The only drawing that represents Aborigines on the colouring flyers, however, is an Aboriginal flag.

Mr Woodward sent an email outlining his disgust to the Network yesterday.

Word puzzles and quizzes will be available from the Rotary van as usual at the Portside Precinct on Tuesday.

View the colouring sheets here



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