Volunteers and emergency workers get a special mention in Anthony Albanese’s first Christmas message as Prime Minister.
The Labor leader reflected on Christmas as being a day of giving, as well as opne to spend with family and friends.
And Mr Albanese singled out those who might be missing the festivities.
“Of course, not everyone gets to take it easy. If you’re rostered on somewhere, I want to say ‘thank you for your service to others’,” he said.
“If you’re working because you’ve volunteered your time to make Christmas better for your fellow Australians – whether you’re serving lunch to those in need or you’re keeping our beaches safe – I want to express my gratitude and my admiration.”
Mr Albanese also expressed thanks to Australian forces personnel overseas for the festive season.
“The same (gratitude and admiration) goes to all our emergency service workers, and of course all Australian Defence Force personnel, whether they’re serving here, or far from home overseas. Thank you to every single one of you,” he said.
Peter Dutton’s softer side
Peter Dutton used his first Christmas address as opposition leader to reflect on the challenges of 2022, including floods and the ongoing effects of COVID-19.
“Whilst it’s been a difficult year, it’s the Australian way that we show gratitude for what we have. Christmas is a time for Australians to again express thanks for how lucky we are to live in the best country in the world,” he said.
“During Christmas, I hope all Australians have time to rest and to celebrate with family and friends.”
The speech also honoured the late Queen Elizabeth II, who Mr Dutton described as embodying “the very best virtues and values”.
Mr Dutton also paid tribute to volunteers helping in flood-affected communities.
“I want to say a very big thank you to the emergency service workers, to police, to first responders, to volunteers, and to the men and women of the Australian Defence Force – not only helping so many Australians during the floods – but also for all of those who will be on duty during Christmas at home and abroad,” he said.
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