AFL cancels minute of silence for AFLW Indigenous Round as leaders honor Queen in Canberra

The AFL has rescinded a decision to hold a minute of silence on the occasion of Queen Elizabeth II’s death before AFLW games this weekend over concerns over the sensitivity of such a move during the Indigenous round.
An AFL spokesperson confirmed to SBS News on Saturday that the decision had been made.
“Since AFLW Season 7 is Indigenous Rounds, all existing plans to respect and honor Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples will continue as planned,” said a memo the AFL sent to clubs.
Obviously, the person offering the Welcome to Country has withdrawn from Friday’s game between the Western Bulldogs and Fremantle in the AFLW.

Earlier on Friday, the AFL announced that a minute of silence will be observed for all AFLW games this weekend.

The decision to remove the minute of silence drew mixed reactions, some critical, while others were supportive and said it showed respect for Indigenous Australians.

AFL Brownlow brought forward one day

Meanwhile, the AFL has moved the Brownlow medal from the traditional Monday night for the grand final to avoid a clash with Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral.

The AFL’s biggest night of the year was to be held on September 19 at the Crown Casino in Melbourne.

But AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan has confirmed that the league will host the Brownlow a day early on September 18, out of respect for the late Queen Elizabeth II.
The funeral service for Queen Elizabeth II has not been confirmed, but will almost certainly take place on September 19.

The move isn’t unprecedented, with the AFL rescheduling a 1997 qualifier so it didn’t clash with Princess Diana’s funeral.

“We have practiced a lot over the past two years to be agile when needed and I would like to thank the Seven Network, Crown Melbourne and all our partners for being so accommodating with this decision,” said Mr McLachlan.

“It’s the right one and we’re incredibly happy with their support.”

In honor of the Queen

Tributes continued to flow for the late Queen, with the MCG lights turned off for Friday night’s Melbourne-Brisbane semi-final as 62,162 fans observed a minute of silence.

The AFL also played a portion of God Save The Queen prior to the national anthem while the Demons and Lions teams were on the field.

The exterior of the MCG was also lit purple in memory of the Queen.

In the NRL, a minute’s silence was observed at Penrith’s BlueBet Stadium before the Panthers’ qualifying final against Parramatta.

Leaders lay wreaths in Canberra

In Canberra, Governor General David Hurley, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and others laid wreaths at the parliament building on Saturday.
There is no official mourning period in Australia, but the prime minister has suspended parliament for at least 15 days.

The NSW and WA parliaments will also meet briefly on Tuesday to hear condolences. Parliamentary assemblies in both states will resume on September 20.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Finance Minister Katy Gallagher will lay a wreath at the statue of Queen Elizabeth II in the parliament building in Canberra on September 10, 2022.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Finance Minister Katy Gallagher lay a wreath at the statue of Queen Elizabeth II in Parliament House in Canberra on September 10, 2022. Australia commemorates the seven-decade reign of Queen Elizabeth II, after her death at the age of 96 in the early hours of Friday morning. Source: MONKEY / Mick Tsikas

The Queensland Parliament, due to take place next week, has been adjourned until a later date.

The Victorian Parliament has suspended a week in respect for Queen Elizabeth II after MPs swore their allegiance to King Charles III, the state government has confirmed.

Prime Minister Daniel Andrews indicated on Friday that it is likely that the state legislature would push back the last three days before the November state election in the wake of the monarch’s death.

However, it cannot be resumed until the MPs swear allegiance to King Charles III.

The government confirmed on Saturday that, following the king’s proclamation as the queen’s successor, both houses will meet on Tuesday so that members can be sworn in by oath or affirmation.

Following the re-swearing, the Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council would adjourn for a week as a mark of respect and return on September 20 in agreement with the NSW Parliament.
“That session day will be used for a condolence motion to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, with both Houses suspended for the day following the closure of the motion,” Victoria’s Department of Premier and Cabinet said in a statement on Saturday.
“The Parliament of South Australia also delivers condolences on (September 20).”
The normal sitting days are set for September 21 and September 22, with farewell speeches by the retiring members.
Victoria is the only jurisdiction where MPs must swear allegiance to the new monarch after the predecessor’s death.
There will be no state memorial for the Queen, but venues are expected to be set up for Victorians to attend her funeral from Westminster Abbey.


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