Darren Chester, Minister for Veterans and Defence Personnel video

Running time
1 min 33sec
Date made
Place made
Department of Veterans' Affairs
The Minister for Veterans and Defence Personnel Darren Chester, reflecting on the vital role of women in the war effort, as we remember the Second World War 80 years on.


On the 3rd of September 1939, Prime Minister Robert Menzies announced that Australia was a war with Germany.

The impact of that announcement was felt across the nation. And the Second World War would come to affect all parts of the community. That included the role of women, which was quite extraordinary. Nurses went overseas with the Australian Imperial Forces in 1940 and many more followed in subsequent years. Many became prisoners of the Japanese and some lost their lives in action or captivity.

At home, the Women’s Land Army was established to encourage women to work on farms. Women in urban areas took up employment in industries such as munitions production and in other occupations previously denied to them.

We should acknowledge the vital role played by all women across the nation.

On the 3rd of September, I encourage all Australians to pause and remember that 80 years ago, our nation entered a period of profound change, which resulted in profound sadness and loss for many families.

And can I say to all those Australians who served, and all those who supported in that service, quite simply, thank you for your service.

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