I rise today to bring attention to the Elizabeth O'Neill Journalism Award, named in honour of my dear friend Liz O'Neill, who died when her Garuda flight ran off the runway at Jogjakarta. Liz was a dedicated public servant with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. She helped families in their time of grief following the Bali bombing and was herself the victim of terrorism when she was blown off her feet when the Australian embassy was bombed in Jakarta.
Liz worked hard to bring together Australians and Indonesians and to foster mutual respect and understanding. She was committed to ensuring journalists from both Indonesia and Australia provided accurate and informed media coverage to enhance our understanding of each other and the issues to both countries.
This award will see early- and mid-career journalists from both Indonesia and Australia spend time in a fully funded program to continue Liz's legacy of mutual understanding and respect through informed and accurate journalism. The program is tailored to suit the area of expertise and interests of the award recipients and their reporting responsibilities. Applications close on 7 October.
This award is a fitting remembrance of my dear friend, and I encourage all early- and mid-career Australian journalists, whether they be in television, radio, print or online, to apply and continue the great work of Liz O'Neill in bringing the people of Australia and Indonesia closer together.