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Abscondment Day

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Day of Abscondment
Also calledAbscondment Day
Observed byCommonwealth of Australia
Date16 December
First time16 December 2021

The Day of Abscondment is an observance in Australia held annually on 16 December. The holiday has been observed annually since 2020 to remember when Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison fled to Hawaii, United States for a holiday while the Black Summer bushfires raged in Australia.[1]

Date and observance[edit]

The first time the Day of Abscondment was observed was in 2021 after a Tweet from Australian writer and activist Van Badham went viral.[2] In responce to this tweet, it was decided that people would wear Hawaiian shirts and display the hibiscus emoji on social media to observe Abscondment Day.


Throughout the summer of 2019-20, hundreds of fires burnt within Australia, mostly in the south-east of the country. The major fires peaked during December–January. It is estimated that the fires burnt 18.6 million hectares (46 million acres; 186,000 square kilometres; 72,000 square miles),[3] destroyed over 5,900 buildings (including 2,779 homes)[4] and killed at least 34 people.[5][6][7][8] It was claimed that three billion terrestrial vertebrates – the vast majority being reptiles – were affected and some endangered species were believed to be driven to extinction.[9] At its peak, air quality dropped to hazardous levels in all southern and eastern states.[10] Economists estimated that the Australian bushfires cost over A$103 billion in property damage and economic losses, making the bushfires Australia's costliest natural disaster to date.[11] Nearly 80 percent of Australians were affected either directly or indirectly by the bushfires.[12]

Controversially, Prime Minister Scott Morrison left Australian during the bushfires to take an overseas family holiday to Hawaii, United States.[13]

See also[edit]

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  1. "Scott Morrison escaped Sydney's bushfires on a business class flight to Hawaii". Retrieved 15 December 2021.
  2. "Van Badham on Twitter".
  3. Burton, Jesinta (7 February 2020). "'It was a line of fire coming at us': Firefighters return home". Busselton-Dunsborough Mail. Retrieved 11 February 2020.
  4. Tiernan, Finbar; O'Mallon, Eamonn (10 January 2020). "Australia's 2019–20 bushfire season". The Canberra Times. Retrieved 13 January 2020.
  5. Green, Matthew (14 January 2020). "Australia's massive fires could become routine, climate scientists warn". Reuters. Retrieved 14 January 2020.
  6. "The numbers behind Australia's catastropic bushfire season". SBS News. 5 January 2020. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  7. Henriques-Gomes, Luke (24 January 2020). "Bushfires death toll rises to 33 after body found in burnt out house near Moruya". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 25 January 2020.
  8. "NSW bushfires: Body found in burnt house on NSW coast". The Sydney Morning Herald. 24 January 2020. Retrieved 24 January 2020.
  9. Slezak, Michael (2020-07-28). "'Almost inconceivable': 3 billion animals believed killed or displaced in Australia's summer fires". ABC News. Retrieved 2020-08-05.
  10. "How The Australian Bushfires Will Impact Health". MSN. Retrieved 18 January 2020.
  11. Beth Daley (17 January 2020). "With costs approaching $100 billion, the fires are Australia's costliest natural disaster". The Conversation. Retrieved 10 September 2020.
  12. "Summer of Crisis". Climate Council. 11 March 2020. Retrieved 16 September 2020.
  13. "PM Scott Morrison Sorry for Hawaii Holiday During Crisis". BBC News. 22 December 2019. Archived from the original on 22 December 2019. Retrieved 23 December 2019. Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)

External links[edit]

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