Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Minister for Defence Personnel Darren Chester said while the cancellation of the event is disappointing, it is a responsible and sensible precaution to help safeguard guests and staff.
“We are doing all we can to protect the health, well-being and livelihoods of Australians in response to Coronavirus and I know the finalists and guests invited will understand that it was necessary to cancel this year’s ceremony,” Mr Chester said.
“The Awards are an opportunity to recognise and celebrate the valuable skills of our veterans, and the organisations that support them, and while the ceremony will not take place as planned I congratulate all the finalists for their exceptional leadership in employing veterans and highlighting the valuable skills ADF personnel bring to the workforce.”
Precautionary changes had been made to the operations of Parliament House, as well as the National Cabinet accepting the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee advice that non-essential indoor gatherings of greater than 100 people (including staff) will no longer be permitted from Wednesday, 18 March 2020.
“We are looking at alternatives to ensure finalists and winners are appropriately recognised for their work in supporting veteran employment and I would like to acknowledge the commitment to veteran employment by our corporate supporters of the Prime Minister’s Veterans’ Employment Awards — particularly our Gold Sponsors, Westpac and ECLIPS,” Mr Chester said.
An announcement of the 2020 Winners will be made next week.
More information about the Prime Minister’s Veterans’ Employment Program, including the Awards, can be found online.