The term ‘Multicultural Australia’ is the impression of Australia today. With over one in four of the population born overseas , Australia is a country with a vast amount of culture, cuisines, traditions and religion. The cause of Australia’s multiculturalism mainly begins around post world war two, over the last 70 years the population of Australia raised dramatically from 7 million to the current 23 million . When the saying “Populate or Perish” was introduced, due to the fear of further invasion from foreigners (xenophobia), Immigration from Britain was encouraged. This increased the intensity of the White Australian Policy from 1901. The ten pound pom was then introduced where British migrants were able to move to Australia with only 10 pounds. Around 1 million British people took the offer up to 1972. This amount not being enough, Arthur Calwell encouraged European refugees to come to Australia preferring blonde hair and blue eyed people. It wasn’t until the mid-1970s when Whitlam stopped the White Australian Policy , however racial exclusion and assimilation were still practiced. Nowadays immigration to Australia is accepted by the following; where professional and skilled workers seeks work or business in Australia, people returning from overseas, education agents or providers, employers who sponsor skilled workers to Australia and the debatable refugee program. In the end the big question is, how did Australia come to change so much? It all comes down to value. Australia’s migration program fully reflects Australia’s worthiest values. What is value? What does Australia value? And how does Australia handle its values?
Value is the belief and ideas about what is important defining a person or community of people. Values of Australia are broad and kept well by the residents here. Some of the most defining and main values of Australia are acceptance, respect, manners and greetings, they support one another as a community where the society isn’t as competitive as many countries overseas. A major aspect of Australian values is freedom, freedom of speech, religion, government opinions, and democracy. Another important value is equality, equal opportunities, and equality under the law, of men and women, of race, of religion, heritage, language or culture, creating an egalitarian system in Australia. Australia is often known as the informal, easy-going and straightforward country. These current values greatly differ from the values during the post war period. During this time Australian wanted to create a white man’s working society, a utopia, valuing white people, blonde hair blue eyes and other thoughts opposing other races. Australian people based their opinions on people with their culture, skin colour and language. Such narrow mindedness was a norm and was accepted in Australian society. On the other hand, many of the current values remained the same as those before, for example respect and manners, freedom and equality however only throughout white people.
Migrants from different countries today have brought and impacted Australia in every possible way, economically, socially and even politically. In return, the migrants have accepted and adapted to Australia’s most defining characteristics. This includes straightforwardness, informality, equality etc. Migrants from all across the world then brings in different cuisines, religions and traditions. This being the reason why Australia has the widest range of cuisines in the world.
It was all by chance that Calwell had proposed ‘populate or perish’ in 1945 , leading to the Australia we have today. But what would Australia be like if Calwell had never introduced such an idea? Australia could have an even smaller population than today, as without the migrants, the population of Australia might only stand at around 15 million. In another perspective, Australia might be a poorer country from invasions due to