In Senate estimates last month, former minister and prolific press-release publisher Eric Abetz grilled officials in the Department of Finance over a rainbow flag placed in the lobby of the department’s Canberra office. Abetz claimed the rainbow flag  is an “activist flag” and it might upset Department of Finance staff. He later claimed on Miranda Devine’s show on 2GB that, since he brought up the issue, other staff had been in contact to thank him for raising the issue.

Finance’s executive board is believed to be examining the matter, but in response to a freedom of information request filed by Crikey, it seems no written or email complaints were made to the department directly about the flag before it was, apparently, flagged by Abetz.

Peter Fray

Fetch your first 12 weeks for $12

Here at Crikey, we saw a mighty surge in subscribers throughout 2020. Your support has been nothing short of amazing — we couldn’t have got through this year like no other without you, our readers.

If you haven’t joined us yet, fetch your first 12 weeks for $12 and start 2021 with the journalism you need to navigate whatever lies ahead.

Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey

JOIN NOW