The Australian Greens have today launched a campaign to get rid of corporate influence from the Australian War Memorial.
Australian Greens Peace and Disarmament spokesperson Senator Jordon Steele-John said The Australian War Memorial is a vital national space of learning and reflection, not a billboard for corporate arms dealers.
"The War Memorial is where our community comes to remember those who have lost their lives in conflict, share stories with those who’ve survived and reflect on the importance of creating a world free from violence," he said.
"But, the major parties have allowed corporate arms dealers to make donations to the War Memorial and use this important space as a billboard.
"Between 2015 and 2018 alone they've donated almost $1.3 million and the memorial now regularly hosts events sponsored by these arms dealers. BAE Systems - a British corporate weapons maker - was even allowed to build a theatre in their own honour.
"Over the last decade, the major parties have eroded the transparency around these donations and after recent questioning during Senate Estimates, Director Brendan Nelson revealed donations disclosure laws had recently been changed meaning that the community now has no way of knowing how much these corporate arms dealers are donating.
"The War Memorial has now become a space influenced by the same corporations who profited from the conflicts that took the lives who are remembered there and in fact the only reason that these corporations have money to donate is because they profit from those violent conflicts.
"Corporate arms dealers have no place in our War Memorial; it’s time to end their influence on this vital public space and make sure that it is transparently and publicly funded so that it can be the space our community needs it to be."
STEELE-JOHN - Tim Oliver; 0448 316 387