Susan Templeman welcomes new Australians through online ceremonies

Macquarie MP Susan Templeman has welcomed nine new Australians to the electorate through innovative new online ceremonies introduced due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Three Hawkesbury residents became Aussies on June 23, as pandemic restrictions meant the official citizenship ceremonies had to be conducted online.

New Aussie: Macquarie MP Susan Templeman welcomed new citizen Paul Etabag (bottom of computer screen) from Richmond. Picture: Supplied.

New Aussie: Macquarie MP Susan Templeman welcomed new citizen Paul Etabag (bottom of computer screen) from Richmond. Picture: Supplied.

"I was really pleased to preside over the virtual ceremonies," Ms Templeman said.

"Usually we'd gather at large council-run events in Windsor with lots of family and friends for such an important occasion, but unfortunately the usual practices weren't possible in the current situation.

"The online ceremonies were still very special, and we made sure my office was decorated with three flags - the Australian flag, the Aboriginal flag and the Torres Strait Islander flag - as well as native flowers.

"In a way, the ceremonies were extra special because it was just the new Aussies pledging their commitment to the nation in front of myself and a representative from the Department of Home Affairs.

"There was laughter, a few tears and deep emotions, as many residents shared that they had waited years to formally become citizens of this great country of ours.

"It was wonderful to welcome people from countries including the Philippines, Mauritius and England to our Australian family - and particularly to the Hawkesbury - in this way."

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