Morning Tea in Support of War Widows Queensland
Premier of Queensland and Minister for the Olympic and Paralympic Games, the Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk MP; Assistant Minister to the Premier for Veterans’ Affairs and the Public Sector and Member for Aspley, Mr Bart Mellish MP; Deputy Commissioner of the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, Ms Tara Hatzismalis; Australian War Widows Queensland Chair, Mr Stephen Scott, Directors, and State President, Mrs Judy Smith; distinguished guests; members and supporters; ladies and gentlemen.
I begin by acknowledging the Traditional Owners of the lands around Brisbane, the Turrbal and Jagera people, and pay my respects to Elders past, present and emerging, and to all First Nations people here today.
As Patron of War Widows Queensland, it’s a pleasure to join you for today’s morning tea, fittingly being hosted here in the Anzac Square Memorial Galleries.
For many decades, this wonderful organisation has given solace and support to the families and partners of our service men and women, and it is indeed a pleasure to be able to show my gratitude and support for you in return.
War widows and veteran families hold a special place in our society.
Directly or indirectly, they help to defend the interests and security of our nation, often at a time of great need and peril.
And in peacetime, war widows and veteran families are almost always among those pulling together to support their communities, understanding the power of collective action and the need to preserve the way of life their loved ones have risked life and limb to defend.
And there walking beside so many of them, not just during their service but also beyond, through the highs and lows of military life, is War Widows Queensland.
It’s no exaggeration to say that you bear the burden of their sacrifice when that burden becomes too heavy.
In 2022, you achieved a significant milestone when War Widows Day was officially declared an observed day in New South Wales and Queensland.
The Australian Capital Territory, South Australia, and Western Australia soon followed, underscoring the nationwide impact of this organisation’s work.
As you continue to devote your time, energy, resources and advocacy to supporting, inspiring, and celebrating the widows, carers and families of our Defence Force personnel, I am proud to support you.
I will be publicly declaring that support when we light up Government House in blue and white this evening, joining other landmarks around our State and nation in marking War Widow’s Day.
On behalf of all Queenslanders, I thank you for actively making a difference in the lives of women whose husbands have made the ultimate sacrifice in service of our nation.
You have our heartfelt appreciation.