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Australia
Flag of Australia (converted).svg
UseNational flag and state ensign
Proportion1:2
Adopted11 February 1903[1]
in use from 3 September 1901
8 December 1908[2] (current seven-pointed Commonwealth Star version)
DesignA Blue Ensign defaced with the Commonwealth Star (also known as the Federation Star) in the lower hoist quarter and the five stars of the Southern Cross in the fly half.
Civil Ensign of Australia.svg

There are two lobby groups involved in the flag debate: Ausflag (est. 1981), which supports changing the flag,[108] and the Australian National Flag Association (ANFA) (est. 1983), which wants to keep the existing flag.[109] The primary arguments for keeping the flag cite historic precedence, while those for changing the flag are based around the idea that the status quo does not accurately depict Australia's status as an independent and multicultural nation,[110] nor is its design unique enough to easily distinguish it from similar flags, such as [107]

There are two lobby groups involved in the flag debate: Ausflag (est. 1981), which supports changing the flag,[108] and the Australian National Flag Association (ANFA) (est. 1983), which wants to keep the existing flag.[109] The primary arguments for keeping the flag cite historic precedence, while those for changing the flag are based around the idea that the status quo does not accurately depict Australia's status as an independent and multicultural nation,[110] nor is its design unique enough to easily distinguish it from similar flags, such as that of New Zealand, Cook Islands and Tuvalu (despite the counter argument that this is not uncommon, as seen with Romania and Chad sharing near identical flags). The similarity between the flag of Australia and those of other countries is often derived from a common colonial history.[111]

The Coaliti

The Coalition government under John Howard in 1996 formally recognised the commemoration of Australian National Flag Day, in 1998 sponsored an amendment to the Flags Act to require any changes to the national flag design to be passed at a plebiscite along the same lines of the 1977 national song poll, in 2002 supplied ANFA's promotional video free to all primary schools and in 2004 required all schools receiving federal funds to fly the Australian flag.[112]

Ausflag periodically campaigns for flag change in association with national events such as the 2000 Summer Olympics,[113] and holds flag design competitions,[108] while ANFA's activities include promotion of the existing flag through events such as National Flag Day.[114] A 2004 Newspoll that asked: "Are you personally in favour or against changing the Australian flag so as to remove the Union Jack emblem?" was supported by 32% of respondents and opposed by 57%, with 11% uncommitted.[115][note 1] A 2010 Morgan Poll that asked: "Do you think Australia should have a new design for our National Flag?" was supported by 29% of respondents and opposed by 66%, with 5% uncommitted.[116]

The connection with the Australian flag is also notable the highest response to it is "extremely proud" and it is the "most embraced Australian symbol."[117]