by Scott Morrison, Prime Minister of Australia
Australians have been challenged in many ways, but we’ve also risen to those challenges.
We are a strong and resilient people, and if you ask Australians to stand up, take action and play their part, they will – and they have.
I thank all Australians for doing their bit – the nurses, doctors, mental health professionals, retail staff, cleaners, truck drivers, farmers, teachers and public servants.
What we have achieved together – saving more than 30,000 lives, supporting over 3 million Australians through JobKeeper, and getting 1 million Australians back into work – it’s something every Australian can be proud to share.
To date over 20 million Australians have had a vaccination, and over 18 million have had two.
I want to thank our multicultural communities for rolling up their sleeves to get the jab because, under the National Plan, that means we can open safely and we can remain safely open as we go into 2022. It means those jobs come back, the businesses come back and the livelihoods come back.
Our multicultural communities have played a vital role in our national success.
I know it’s been difficult for so many to be separated from family and friends, and not be able to celebrate traditions and religious ceremonies as you normally would.
But you’ve stayed the course.
You’ve done whatever it takes to keep each other safe.
You’ve kept going, stayed strong and helped keep our nation together.
That’s why Australia is the most successful multicultural nation in the world.
A place where we all buy in and draw strength from our shared values – such as mutual respect and individual responsibility.
Your efforts have helped the country that we all love and care about respond so magnificently to this pandemic.
I can’t thank you enough.
This is why our country can open safely and stay safely open.
As we reclaim our lives and reunite with each other again, we can put 2021 in the rear-vision mirror and move forward to 2022 with confidence.
I wish everyone a Merry Christmas, a bright and happy summer, and a hopeful new year.
The Hon Scott Morrison MP
Prime Minister of Australia