Crikey! In the wake of the tragic death of Queen Elizabeth II, Australians are asking to have national icon, Steve Irwin, replace the Queen on the country’s $5 banknotes instead of King Charles III.
Following the announcement from Australian National Bank that King Charles III will soon appear on the country’s $5 note and coins, some have argued that a local Aussie icon should be given the honour instead.
can we get a petition to get steve irwin’s face on money in place of the queen going?
it’s what we all want
— badoing (@hexthesun) September 9, 2022
Taking to Twitter, many Australians have flooded the platform demanding that it’s “time to replace Queen Elizabeth’s face on cash with Steve Irwin” with some people already making mockups of how the new note should look if Irwin, or other Aussie icons, were to take the Queen’s spot.
Steve Irwin deserves our highest form of currency. The $5 note will explode in vale if we put him on that note.
— FancyRefined (@24viva) September 8, 2022
This isn’t the first instance where the public has demanded the late crocodile hunter be memorialised on the country’s notes.
16 years ago, a man named Kyle Ryan started a petition to encourage the Royal Australian Mint to Put Steve Irwin on the Australian currency.
“It’s about time we payed our respects to the all time greatest Australian bloke, Steve Irwin. Let’s make a change for something in the history of our country,” Ryan had written in the petition’s details.
“With a list a mile long of all the good Steve had accomplished in our world let’s show our appreciation to a great true blue Australian by putting Stephen ‘Steve’ Irwin on our country’s currency.”
Despite never fulfilling his wish, Ryan’s now-closed petition gained over 30,000 supporters and received an abundance of support from the public who said “most Australians don’t even know who half the people in our currency are or what they did. Let’s update people who have been important in recent history.”
The most recent calls to change Australia’s currency come as the nation undergoes a heated debate on whether it should stay a monarchy or become a republic.
— Fifty Shades of Whey (@davenewworld_2) September 15, 2022
In a poll conducted by Roy Morgan following the Queen’s death, results showed that a bulk of Australia’s population wants the nation to remain under the Commonwealth, as the new data shows support for the Monarchy has grown in the last 10 years.
Despite being a republic supporter himself, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has shut down “disgraceful” and “disrespectful” calls for Australia to leave the Monarchy following Her Majesty’s death.
Having appointed an Assistant Minister for the Republic, Matt Thistlethwaite, at the start of his term, Albanese told Sky News now is not the time for a discussion on the referendum.
The Prime Minister reiterated that now is a time for mourning and to show “deep respect and admiration” for the Queen’s service to the country.
As Australia continues to mourn the loss of the Queen, the Reserved Bank of Australia will carry on processing the country’s new set of coins, which is expected to be released sometime in 2023 with the notes going into circulation sometime after.