Indigenous leaders want flag flying on Anzac Day

GLADSTONE RSL has announced it would be flying the New Zealand flag and the Union Jack alongside the Australian flag at next year's Anzac Day services.

But local elder Richard Johnson says it is unacceptable that in 2015 the Aboriginal flag is not flown on Anzac Day.

"It's not 1788 and we don't have to ask permission from the Queen to fly our flag," he said.

A post-Anzac Day debriefing at the Gladstone RSL has seen branch members agree to fly the Australian, New Zealand and Union Jack flags at next year's service.

The decision was made on Thursday, and followed the notable absence of the New Zealand flag at the Anzac Day service where three Australian flags had flown.

President Russell Tidd said they would now be following protocols.

"One of our troops was down in Canberra and we have decided on these three flags," he said.

"It is a big decision and by going with the official orders from down south we will be doing the right thing."

Mr Johnson said the Australian flag did not represent Aborignal people who had served for Australia.

He said the Aboriginal community did not associate with the Australian flag, and that the flag didn't represent Aboriginals who had fought.

"The Southern Cross is the only part we associate with because it has always been here," the Goreng Goreng elder said.

"Our men fought with the Anzacs and should be represented with them."

Mr Tidd said he didn't want discussions about the flag to take away from Anzac Day.

"No matter how well you plan these things there will always be a hiccup, but the whole day respected every Anzac," he said.

"We are extremely happy with our two services and the best crowds I have ever seen in Gladstone.

"It was the first time we have held it at the bowls club. We are both heading in the right direction and looking forward to Vietnam Veteran's Day."



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