4 June 2024

New community flagpole in Griffith enables ethnic groups to recognise national days

| Oliver Jacques
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People holding the Indian and Italian flags

Ethnic groups can now request to have their flags flown over Griffith. Photo: Griffith City Council.

Multicultural community organisations in Griffith can now request to fly a flag at the Griffith Community Gardens to recognise dates of significance to the community.

The town’s largest ethnic group, Italians, were the first to celebrate their republic day (on 2 June) by raising their national symbol on a new community flagpole, which was installed last month.

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The initiative was spearheaded by councillor Manjit Singh Lally and Carmel La Rocca of the Multicultural Council of Griffith.

“About two or three years ago, a Vanuatu group wanted to celebrate their independence day by erecting a flagpole,” Ms La Rocca said.

“We thought it would be good to do something permanent.”

Councillor Lally made a successful budget request to have the flagpole funded.

“Lots of community members were asking if they could celebrate their national day and were looking for space to hold a ceremony,” Councillor Lally said.

“The flagpole allows us to celebrate our community’s richness and recognise significant events and dates that are important to our residents.”

Italian flag raised

Councillor Manjit Lally and Multicultural Council head Carmel La Rocca under the Italian flag, the first to be raised. Photo: Multicultural Council of Griffith.

Councillor Lally said the flag of his country, India, would be raised over Griffith to celebrate India’s Independence Day on 15 August.

“We have such a large multicultural community here in Griffith. I think it’s important that we are able to demonstrate our commitment to diversity and inclusivity,” he added.

“Council already has flags for most countries.”

Community members interested in utilising the community flagpole can book their preferred dates through an online bookable system.

The key for the flagpole will be available for collection at council’s administration office.

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“You pay a deposit for the key, but you get that money back when you return it,” Ms La Rocca said.

“In the future, I’d like to erect a sign to let people know what the flag is for and to explain what day it symbolises.

“I think two-thirds of the town has some type of multicultural link, so it’s an important initiative.”

All requests will be evaluated by council on a first come, first served basis to ensure fair and equal access.

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