Now more than ever, it’s vitally important that we all work together to show that harmonious cultural diversity is what underpins Australia’s long record of peace and prosperity. Perhaps emboldened by the election of Donald Trump in the United States, there is a loud minority of people in Australia who are undermining multiculturalism by attacking Muslim Australians.
When the Greens walked out on Senator Pauline Hanson’s hateful and Islamophobic speech in the Senate last September, we did so to make it clear to Muslim communities across Australia – and indeed to everyone who feels threatened by the rise of racist hate-speech – that we stand with you.
We in the Greens celebrate and honour the many significant contributions made by Indian Muslims to modern Australia. My parents moved here from Italy, and I’m very proud of Australia’s harmony, its diversity and its inclusiveness. With more than 700 languages spoken by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander nations before 1788, Australia has always been a place of enormous cultural diversity.
I know the Indian Crescent Society of Australia is already doing wonderful and important work to assist new migrants and to build important links with other groups and communities. I look forward to working with ICSOA to promote peace and harmony in our society, and to ensure that everyone can participate fully in Australia’s communities and public life.
Senator Richard Di Natale
Leader of Australian Greens