Moving: migration memories in modern Australia

Today, nearly five out of every ten people in New South Wales are either migrants or the children of migrants.

Non-discriminatory migration was legislated four decades ago when the Federal Labor Government, under Gough Whitlam, dismantled the ‘White Australia’ policy. No longer could non-European immigration be restricted on racial grounds. The following Liberal Prime Minister, Malcolm Fraser, was also a strong advocate of a multicultural Australia.

As a result, from the mid-1970s, extensive migration from South-East Asian countries took place. Moving: migration memories in modern Australia begins where the award-winning Belongings: post-WW2 migration memories & journeys ends. The year is 1975: Vietnamese refugees are welcomed to Australia when Saigon falls to the Communists.

Middle Eastern and Latin American conflicts also triggered people to move to Australia. More recently, migration waves have emerged from the African continent whilst newcomers from India and China represent the highest growth. In 2013, New South Wales is home to more than 200 cultures from across the world.

Moving shares the stories of post-1975 migration to New South Wales through personal mementos, cultural traditions, photographs and memories. Participants reminisce about family separation, freedom, ambition and safety in compelling video histories.

Watch these personal stories and discover more about modern Australia through the lives of everyday people and their memorabilia.

Source: ABS 2011 Census