City of Melbourne stages first virtual citizenship ceremony

The City of Melbourne Council has become the first Local Government Authority to conduct a virtual citizenship ceremony, with seven people becoming new Australians last week via video link.

With councils unable to stage citizenship formalities in the usual way because of Covid-19 restrictions, the Department of Home Affairs started trialling video link ceremonies in March.

The department also began working with the City of Melbourne on a pilot trial aimed at minimising technical issues and ensuring legal requirements were met in virtual ceremonies.

Acting Citizenship Minister Alan Tudge commended the council for helping with the trial, and said 90,000 people were expected to receive their citizenship this way over the next six months.