GOVERNMENT OF Australia SS6CG7 – The student will explain the structure of the national government of Australia
ELEMENTS • Describe the federal parliamentary democracy of Australia, distinguishing form of leadership, type of legislature, and the role of the citizen in terms of voting and personal freedoms
ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS • What is the structure of the Australian government? • What role does the citizen have as a participant in Australia’s government?
AUSTRALIA’S GOVERNMENT STRUCTURE • Australia’s government system is a federal parliamentary democracy • Australia has a written constitution, but is still run by a figurehead leader • Australia’s government is similar to the government set up in Great Britain
GOVERNMENT STRUCTURE • Australia is led by a figurehead leader who has no power, the king or queen of England • Like Canada, Australia also has a governor-general who also has no power, but represents the king or queen in Australia • The real power is held by Parliament, who is the legislative group in Australia • They make the laws for the country • Broken down into two houses: Senate and the House of Representatives • Another person with power is also the prime minister, who is chosen by the members of Parliament
ROLE OF CITIZENS IN AUSTRALIA • Citizens of Australiahave personal freedoms like ones in the United States, such as freedom of speech, freedom of religion, equal rights and freedom of the press • The voting age for Australiais 18, and citizens are required to vote, and can face a fine if they do not • Australia has one of the highest voter turnouts in the world