How to choose your days off
A NEW campaign is urging people to ask their bosses to take a different day off for Australia Day.
Many workers don't realise they don't have to stick to the declared public holidays and most contracts allow you to chose a different date to have off.
Melbourne animator Dale de Silva wants to get this information out to empower people to support the #ChangeTheDate movement.
With the help of friends, the 35-year-old has set up a website to guide people on how to ask their bosses for a different day off, as well as provide information for employers.
The push to change the date of Australia Day, which marks the anniversary of the First Fleet landing, has been gaining momentum as it is offensive to Aboriginal communities.
A number of Melbourne councils have already chosen to change the date of their celebrations and Triple J has also decided to move its Hottest 100 broadcast.
Mr De Silva said he supported changing Australia Day.
"There are things that we do to celebrate Australia Day and we are used to them because they are tradition," he told news.com.au. "We have barbecues and things like that, but we can quite easily move that and celebrate on another date.
"The date itself doesn't have any meaning for us."
He said while the 26th of January was an important day to recognise, no one should seek to celebrate what it marks.
"The issue isn't just about Aboriginals and Torres Straight Islanders, but about all of our history as a whole and what we all choose to celebrate about Australia," he said.
His website Change It Ourselves, also provides posters for people to download so the wider community could see there was support for changing the date.
"In researching how to support the cause myself, I found the only options seemed to be to attend the #ChangeTheDate march or complain on Facebook, but both of those felt like waiting for change from above," Mr De Silva said.
"It occurred to me that workplaces can be very supportive of personal beliefs and there must be something in employee contracts to allow shifting of a public holiday - and as it turns out, in many cases there is."
To find out more information go to www.changeitourselves.com.au