The Celebrants Network Inc
PO Box 3113, Robertson NSW 2577
Convener:  Rona Goold  BSc (GenSc) DipEd. CMC
Phone:  02 4885 2393
Email:    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

15th February 2010

Health Reform Taskforce
MDP 155 GPO Box 9848

Dear Taskforce Members

Please find attached a Summary of our Submission which aims to ‘embed prevention’ .. ‘into every aspect of’ ..  our lives’.

Our proposition is that the 18th Birthday is the new Coming of Age - Citizenship Ceremony - rite of passage that

  • needs strengthening as a family and friendship based event as young Australians entering adulthood take on the full range of rights and responsibilities of citizenship, not just the right to drink and drive,
  • can increase awareness of the rights and responsibilities of citizenship of the peer group and family support system of the young adult,
  • can provide parents and others with a much clearer boundary between  adolescence and adulthood, to reduce early use of alcohol by teenagers.
Civil ceremonies are evolving as a uniquely Australian way of celebrating important personal and family events in an increasingly secular society.  Civil celebrants perform an valuable function in our multi-cultural society in providing inclusive ceremonies that are beneficial, not only for those that hire their services, but for the extended family and friends and other guests.

We consider the appointment of Citizenship Celebrants would be a relatively economical and effective health prevention strategy for the Government to implement as it would utilize existing resources and be partly self-funded.

In 2009, the Coalition of Celebrant Associations, a national peak body of 14 celebrant associations set up as a consultative body at the request of the Attorney General, supported these two motions:

· Exploring strategies for broadening the role of civil marriage celebrants to meet related objectives under the Federal Attorney-General's sphere of responsibility.

· The development of community based "adult Australian Citizenship" ceremonies for all young people turning 18 years of age.

Please contact us for more information, as above.

Yours sincerely

Rona Goold
Convener TCN Inc