SA introduces national-first day of recognition for ADF families
The Sector > Workforce > Advocacy > SA introduces national-first day of recognition for ADF families

SA introduces national-first day of recognition for ADF families

by Freya Lucas

May 07, 2024

South Australia will become the first Australian state to formally acknowledge current and former Australian Defence Force (ADF) families and the contributions and personal sacrifices they make, with the introduction of an annual day of recognition.


Moving forward, 15 May will be acknowledged annually as Veterans’ Families Day in South Australia.


Early childhood services, schools, bases, community centres, ex-service organisations, Government and non-Government organisations are encouraged to embrace this important day that allows for a collective opportunity to recognise and celebrate the spouses, partners, children and families who are the ‘backbone’ of the Veteran community.


“South Australia is proud to lead the charge by becoming the first Australian jurisdiction to formally establish a dedicated day of recognition for veterans’ families,” Minister for Veteran’s Affairs Joe Szakacs said.


“Families play a vital role in supporting our veterans, both during and after service, and the South Australian Government has acted to ensure they receive the recognition they rightfully deserve.”


“Veterans’ Families Day provides a valuable opportunity to acknowledge the contribution and personal sacrifices made by veterans’ families who stand alongside and support their serving family member every day.”


ADF families make immense sacrifices such as giving up their careers to accommodate frequent relocations and fulfilling the role of two parents while partners are deployed. Children in veteran families also encounter a unique set of challenges associated with life as a military family, something the SA Government believes is important to recognise.


ABS Census data from 2021 shows that one in 17 South Australian households (6 per cent) have at least one person who was either currently serving or had previously served in the Australian Defence Force.


“Veterans’ families are the lifeblood of the Defence community and all too often we forget the sacrifices they make to ensure that their family unit remains strong when the serving member is both away and at home,” Legatee Robert Eley CSC, President, Legacy Club of South Australia and Broken Hill Inc said. 


“Veterans’ families are also essential in supporting those veterans who bear the hidden scars of their service, by helping them heal. This public recognition reinforces the importance of the veterans’ family unit in the ongoing well-being of those that serve or have served.”


Veterans’ Families Day will be held in alignment with International Day of Families which is also marked on 15 May.

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