The Aboriginal flag will fly permanently on the West Gate Bridge, signifying Victoria’s commitment to acknowledging and celebrating First Peoples’ history, heritage and culture. Since 2019, the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander flags have flown on a rotational basis during Reconciliation and NAIDOC weeks. And now, at the end of this year’s NAIDOC week on July 10, the flag will stay up there permanently.
For Kelly Lehmann, Chairperson of Bunurong Land Council Aboriginal Corporation, this move is a significant first step. “The Aboriginal flag represents inclusiveness, recognition and respect, and having it flown permanently atop the West Gate Bridge demonstrates this commitment to Aboriginal communities in Victoria,” she said.
The iconic bridge is located on Bunurong Country, and flying the flag will be a way to recognise and celebrate First Peoples and Traditional Owners as the custodians of the land and waters in Victoria.
“The West Gate Bridge is one of our most visible landmarks,” said Minister for Roads and Road Safety Ben Carroll. “Now, the thousands of motorists who use the bridge every day can view the Aboriginal flag flying proudly above our city.”
Work is also underway to identify the feasibility and requirements needed to fly the Torres Strait Islander and Victorian State flags alongside the Aboriginal and Australian flags. This will take into consideration current flag protocols, and the structural, safety and maintenance requirements of the bridge.