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Australia reacts to Queen Elizabeth II’s death: Anthony Albanese and governor general lay wreaths at Parliament House | Australia news

Key events

NSW taskforce to tackle real estate underqouting

The NSW government is setting up a taskforce to monitor and investigate the real estate practice of publicly advertising property prices that are lower than the seller is willing to accept.

The Andrews government will spend $3.8m on the taskforce to crackdown on the practice – known as underquoting – that was wasting the time and money of Victorians

Work will start immediately, the government said in a statement Saturday, with sales campaigns being monitored and market intelligence collected, with targeted inspections to seize documents.

In May, government inspectors made unannounced visits to 29 metropolitan and regional estate agents’ offices to monitor their compliance with underquoting laws.

Consumer affairs minister, Melissa Horne, said:

We’re cracking down on underquoting by real estate agents because it is not only unfair and wastes house-hunters’ time and money at a time when every dollar courts – it’s also illegal.

A dedicated taskforce sends a strong message and will ensure those doing the wrong thing are held to account. Purchasing a property is one of the biggest decisions people make and they deserve honest pricing to make informed decisions about how they spend their money.

The taskforce will be run out of Consumer Affairs Victoria and will include existing and additional officers with a range of skills and experience – including inspectors, investigators, information analysts, and legal officers.

AFL moves Brownlow medal to avoid clash with Queen’s funeral

AAP is reporting the AFL has moved the Brownlow Medal from its traditional Monday night before the grand final to avoid a clash with the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II.

The sport’s biggest night of the year was scheduled to be held at Crown Casino in Melbourne on September 19.

But AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan has confirmed the league will stage the Brownlow on September 18 instead, out of respect for the late Queen.

The funeral service for Queen Elizabeth II has not been confirmed, but it will almost certainly be held on September 19.

The move is not without precedent, with the AFL rescheduling a qualifying final in 1997 so it did not clash with the funeral of Princess Diana.

Tributes continue to flow for the late Queen, with the MCG lights turned off before the Melbourne-Brisbane semi-final on Friday night as 62,162 fans observed a minute’s silence.

The AFL also played part of God Save The Queen prior to the national anthem as the Demons and Lions teams stood on the field.

The outside of the MCG was also lit up in purple in memory of the Queen.

In the NRL, a minute’s silence was observed at Penrith’s BlueBet Stadium for the Panthers’ qualifying final against Parramatta.

As this blog reported earlier, the AFLW has reversed a decision to have a minute’s silence before its Indigenous round games this weekend.

Natasha May

University of Sydney honours the Queen with royal-themed repertoire

University of Sydney students have come to the Quadrangle Saturday afternoon for the annual book fair, filing out of the Great Hall as the carillon plays a royal-themed repertoire in honour of Queen Elizabeth’s passing.

Tim is glad the university is marking the monarch:

People online are very validly saying that they personally aren’t mourning and they have every prerogative not to mourn themselves. But I think it’s nice our institutions are commemorating her.

There’s such a stellar quote from her 1992 ‘annus horribilis’ speech – something about people in public service we have every prerogative to keep them accountable, and to do it with a touch of kindness is the right way to do it.

Royal-themed repertoire starting at the University of Sydney, played from the carillon.

“I Vow to Thee My Country” is first with “God Save the Queen” to follow. pic.twitter.com/cWpB7MXtIm

— Natasha May (@natasha__may) September 10, 2022

I ask two other students, Astro and Matthew, about the royal repertoire playing. Astro says:

Oh is that what that’s about? I think it makes sense because the University of Sydney is quite an old establishment. It’s sad, but I also think we’re going to become a republic soon because of King Charles.

Matthew adds:

I think having a royal family anyway is a bit silly.

Former prime minister, Kevin Rudd, has written for the Guardian about the death of Queen Elizabeth and how her seemingly “indestructible force” had many imagining she could “stay with us forever”.

And also, a funny story about the Queen’s less-than-complimentary view on the virtues of one of her corgis.

Confirmation Victoria’s parliament suspended for one week

As expected, Victoria’s parliament will not sit next week. Here’s a joint statement statement from leader of the legislative council, Jaclyn Symes, and leader of the house, Lizzie Blandthorn.

Following the sad passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the Victorian Parliament will adjourn for one week as a mark of respect.

As per the advice of the Presiding Officers, following the proclamation of Her Majesty’s successor, both Houses of Parliament will sit on Tuesday so that Members of the Assembly and Council can be sworn by oath or affirmation.

Following this process, both the Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council will adjourn for one week as a mark of respect and return to sit on Tuesday 20 September – in line with the Parliament of NSW.

That day of sitting will be used for a motion of condolence for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, with both Houses adjourning for the day at the motion’s conclusion.

The Parliament of South Australia is also delivering messages of condolence on Tuesday 20 September.

Wednesday 21 September and Thursday 22 September will sit as normal, with valedictory speeches being given by retiring Members.

Can King Charles still be a climate activist?

Will King Charles III continue his long and very public advocacy for action on the climate and biodiversity crisis that he did when he was Prince of Wales?

It’s a question many are asking. In a speech overnight, there was a hint that, at least publicly, he will have to take a step back.

It will no longer be possible for me to give so much of my time and energies to the charities and issues for which I care so deeply. But I know this important work will go on in the trusted hands of others.

The Washington Post has pointed out that as Prince, he was a “potent influencer” with global reach, not just among the 54 Commonwealth nations and their 2.4bn people.

Like his mother, the Prince may feel he should now adopt a more discreet and less inflammatory tone, or hold his tongue when previously he would have let it rip.

As prince, Charles has said he understands the frustration of activist groups like Extinction Rebellion.

Prince Charles delivers a speech at the opening ceremony of the UN Climate Change Conference Cop26 in Glasgow, Scotland.
Prince Charles delivers a speech at the opening ceremony of the UN Climate Change Conference Cop26 in Glasgow, Scotland. Photograph: Yves Herman/AP

He urged former prime minister, Scott Morrison, to attend global climate talks and he once described “deniers” of climate science as “headless chickens”. He said:

Perhaps it has been too uncomfortable for those with vested interests to acknowledge, but we have spent the best part of the past century enthusiastically testing the world to utter destruction; not looking closely enough at the long-term impact our actions will have.

In a speech in March 2020, the prince linked the horror of the Black Summer bushfires that swept Australia in the months prior to climate change.

Longer, hotter, drier summers are the new reality with which Australia must contend. And so, while we pray that the devastation of this past bushfire season will not be seen again, we must, it troubles me to say, be prepared that it may be very likely repeated and that the resilience of the Australian people will continue to be tested in an unprecedented way.

At last year’s global climate talks in Glasgow, the now monarch said:

We know what we must do. With a growing global population creating ever-increasing demand on the planet’s finite resources, we have to reduce emissions urgently and take action to tackle the carbon already in the atmosphere, including from coal-fired power stations.

Putting a value on carbon, thus making carbon capture solutions more economical, is therefore absolutely critical. Similarly, after billions of years of evolution, nature is our best teacher – in this regard, restoring natural capital, accelerating nature-based solutions and leveraging the circular bioeconomy will be vital to our efforts.

We’ll have to wait to see if King Charles can break with the habit of a lifetime and keep his counsel private.

But what the King says to global leaders in private is another question. One we will likely rarely ever get a glimpse of.

There’s little doubt, though, that the new monarch has been a lifelong environmentalist and advocate for climate change action. That won’t change.

Here’s my colleague Calla Wahlquist who has looked back at the long history of the late Queen’ Elizabeth’s visits to Australia, starting with the first ever visit to the country by a reigning monarch in 1954.

They were greeted upon arrival in Sydney harbour by a crowd of 1 million people – more than half the city’s population at the time. It was the first televised event in Australian history…

It was the first of 16 visits the Queen made to Australia during her 70-year reign. Three generations of Australians have memories of standing on tippy-toes, in their crispest school uniform, to catch a glimpse of Her Majesty.

Queen Elizabeth II steps off the royal barge at Farm Cove in Sydney, Australia, becoming the first reigning monarch of Australia to set foot in the country, 3rd February 1954.
Queen Elizabeth II steps off the royal barge at Farm Cove in Sydney, Australia, becoming the first reigning monarch of Australia to set foot in the country, 3rd February 1954. Photograph: Fox Photos/Getty Images

My colleague Josh Taylor has this explainer on some of the changes we can expect in Australia after the death of Queen Elizabeth.

From currency and QC’s to oaths and public holidays.

We’re asking our readers to share their thoughts, memories and tributes on the passing of the Queen, and the rise of King Charles III.

In other news…

Malcolm Farr has written about new senator David Pocock, and how the “Pocock factor” will influence the government’s success at passing new bills.

Pocock is much more than a new guy who said the word “bullshit” in parliament after hearing more climate science denial from a small minority of the usual suspect senators, he writes.

Josh Butler

Josh Butler

After the prime minister, Anthony Albanese, and the governor general, David Hurley, led the laying of wreaths at the Queen’s statue at Parliament House, numerous other federal MPs including Michaelia Cash, Linda Reynolds, Jane Hume and Gordon Reid followed suit.

After the politicians, dozens of members of Canberra’s diplomatic establishment paid their respects, with foreign ambassadors and representatives from embassies also laying floral tributes.

Notable in the line of those laying flowers and wreaths was Chinese ambassador Xiao Qian, with tributes laid on behalf of the embassies of New Zealand, Thailand, Serbia, Singapore, Peru, Egypt and many more.

China’s ambassador to Australia, Xiao Qian, lays a wreath at the statue of Queen Elizabeth II at Parliament House in Canberra
China’s ambassador to Australia, Xiao Qian, lays a wreath at the statue of Queen Elizabeth II at Parliament House in Canberra. Photograph: Mick Tsikas/AAP

The opposition leader, Peter Dutton, also spoke with reporters after the wreath-laying ceremony at Parliament House.

Dutton said the ceremony and the array of diplomats present “really reinforce the impact of the Queen’s passing, not just in Commonwealth countries but right across the world.”

He said:

That was the impact of the Queen, the leadership that she provided for the [time] of her reign, the inspiration that she provided for generations, the stoic nature, the way in which she stood by her people through good times and bad, and it is fitting that we have been able to lay wreaths today.

Dutton said the King’s first address overnight had continued “in the same selfless spirit as his mother served, and lived her life”.

I want to acknowledge a lot of outpouring of emotion right across the country – the amount of messages that we’ve had from people in my electorate and around the country who are grieving in different ways.

They have been touched in ways because of their own lives and their own experiences, even though they may not have met the Queen, but they have taken something from her service and they’ve been able to associate with that and I think that was the great power, the great strength of her leadership.

She was able to connect with people from all walks of life, and that’s why there is such a deep sense of grief and mourning.

Politicians, dignitaries and diplomats laid wreaths at the statue of Queen Elizabeth II at Parliament House in Canberra.
Politicians, dignitaries and diplomats laid wreaths at the statue of Queen Elizabeth II at Parliament House in Canberra. Photograph: Mick Tsikas/AAP

Anthony Albanese says Queen’s commitment to service an ‘absolute inspiration’

Australian prime minister Anthony Albanese spoke last night with the new UK prime minister, Liz Truss, who met with the Queen in Scotland just two days before her death.

Speaking to reporters moments after a wreath-laying ceremony at Parliament House, Albanese said:

We talked about the depth of mourning that is occurring in the United Kingdom, but I also conveyed the feeling, the depth of sadness of the Australian people at the loss of Queen Elizabeth II. We will meet when I am in the United Kingdom.

Some time next week, the prime minister will fly to the UK ahead of the Queen’s funeral at Westminster Abbey. He will also meet formally with King Charles III alongside the governor general, David Hurley.

The prime minister also commented on the King’s speech overnight.

I think there have been many moving tributes to the contribution of Queen Elizabeth, but none more so than from King Charles III. King Charles, of course, was paying tribute not just to the sovereign but to his beloved mother, and it was extraordinarily fitting words.

It struck me in particular his words where he said, “the affection, admiration and respect she inspired became the hallmark of her reign.”

That’s why so many Australians have made moving tributes and are mourning this enormous loss, and I again reiterate, on behalf of the people of Australia, our sympathy for the royal family, for their personal loss as well as to the people of the United Kingdom and the people of the Commonwealth in particular, but also the whole world for what is an enormous loss.

Queen Elizabeth reigned for 70 years, in an era of enormous change. She was a constant, reassuring presence with her compassion, her decency, her commitment to service which is an absolute inspiration and which King Charles has referred to in his remarks paying tribute to his late mother.

Australian prime minister Anthony Albanese and finance minister Katy Gallagher after laying a wreath at the statue of Queen Elizabeth II at Parliament House in Canberra
Australian prime minister Anthony Albanese and finance minister Katy Gallagher after laying a wreath at the statue of Queen Elizabeth II at Parliament House in Canberra Photograph: Mick Tsikas/AAP

This morning’s formal and silent wreath-laying ceremony at Parliament House will be the first of many formalities and occasions for reflection over the coming weeks after the death of the Queen. Another will take place tomorrow.

The last time Australia experienced the death of a monarch was 6 February 1952, when the then prime minister, Robert Menzies, told parliament at 9.50pm that King George VI had died.

As then governor general William McKell did in 1952, the current governor general, David Hurley, will tomorrow read a proclamation at Parliament House. He will declare the death of Queen Elizabeth II and the new reign of King Charles III.

Natasha May

Natasha May

Jackie Traynere and Barbara Parker are visiting Sydney from Chicago, Illinois, and praised Hail Marys for the Queen’s death outside government house in Sydney.

They said their first memory of the Queen was the royal wedding when Princess Diana and Prince Charles got married. Parker said:

I worked with a woman who didn’t want to be bothered. She rented a hotel room and went in there ordered room service and turned on the TV and just stayed there to watch the whole wedding.

The last big wedding before that was Luke and Laura on General Hospital.

Being in Sydney for the Queen’s death Parker said:

I had a woman in the hotel lobby yesterday that came up to me, all of a sudden she starts hugging me. And she said, Did you hear our queen is dead?

She goes, “aren’t you a Brit? I’m like, No, I’m an American but it’s still sad.

Jackie Traynere and Barbara Parker are visiting Sydney from Chicago Illinois and praised hail Maries for the Queen’s death outside government house in Sydney. pic.twitter.com/TW59gaTUTi

— Natasha May (@natasha__may) September 9, 2022

Jenny Collins brought her 6-year-old daughter Scarlett and 11-year-old son Xavier to lay flowers and a handwritten card at government house Sydney.

I wanted the kids to have something they’ll remember and they’ll tell their kids they remember when the Queen passed and and when they went and saw all these flowers and all the people.

I think it’s important because it’s a moment in time for Australian history and the Queen was – especially for our girls – she was an amazing role model for them. And they’ll, they’ll know a king forevermore now, and we grew up with the queen.

Jenny Collins brought her 6 year old daughter Scarlett to lay flowers so she would have something to remember the Queen by.

“The Queen an amazing role model, especially for our girls. They’ll know a king forevermore now, and we grew up with the queen.” pic.twitter.com/NhE7LYPux1

— Natasha May (@natasha__may) September 10, 2022

Diplomats have now moved through the ceremony on Queen’s Terrace laying wreaths and flowers, including UK high commissioner Vicki Treadell and the Chinese ambassador Xiao Qian.

Flags at Parliament House, as they are in most places, are at half-mast today. The ceremony has just concluded.

Australian Governor-General Hurley and his wife, and PM Albanese with finance minister Katy Gallagher, lay wreaths at the Queen’s statue in a ceremony at Parliament House pic.twitter.com/HAgsQQeepw

— Josh Butler (@JoshButler) September 10, 2022

Josh Butler

Josh Butler

Walking up to the Queen’s statue on the building’s terrace in a procession, led by the Senate’s usher of the black rod, governor general David Hurley and his wife paused for a moment to reflect. They walked forward to lay a wreath of bright yellow flowers, including wattle and sunflowers.

Anthony Albanese and Katy Gallagher were next, laying a similar wreath of yellow and green. ACT chief minister Andrew Barr followed.

Speaker of the Gouse Milton Dick was accompanied by Senate president Sue Lines to lay their wreath. Opposition leader Peter Dutton followed after.

All wreaths were laid in silence.

Green and gold wreaths of flowers have been placed at the foot of the statue of the Queen by Anthony Albanese and finance minister Katy Gallagher.

ACT chief minister Andrew Barr and the opposition leader Peter Dutton follow.

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/live/2022/sep/10/australia-reacts-to-queen-elizabeth-iis-death-albanese-and-dutton-to-lay-wreaths-at-parliament-house Australia reacts to Queen Elizabeth II’s death: Anthony Albanese and governor general lay wreaths at Parliament House | Australia news

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