National medal

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Annex 5 (cont)

Regulation No

Nature of service

Time requirements

or restrictions?

Who nominates

for Medal?

Who qualifies?

Which medal(s)?


Intended to apply to eligible civilian service, then ADF, but can have any mix, except that it will all be counted for the National Medal.

Person must not have a defence long service award or an entitlement to one.
A person who has benefited from regulation 19 cannot make an election.
Must have at least one day’s eligible service

(ADF or civilian) on, or after 14/2/1975.

Chief Officer of current or most recent organisation, which may be Chief of the Defence Force or delegate.

Persons with unrecognised eligible civilian service who join the ADF and undertake qualifying/efficient defence service.

National Medal

(Cannot be awarded a defence long service award, all defence service is counted towards the National Medal.

Cannot change once election is made.)


Member of a foreign military, naval or air force or service organisation is seconded to the ADF or an Australian service organisation.

After secondment the person must join (not necessarily immediately) the ADF or an Australian service organisation.

Chief of the Defence Force or delegate or Chief Officer of civilian approved organisation.

Persons with seconded service with the ADF or a service organisation who subsequently join the ADF or a service organisation.

National Medal for service organisation.

National Medal for ADF only if relevant under regulations 19, 20 or 21.

No specific regulation needed

ADF and eligible civilian service simultaneously.

As per each award.

Chief of the Defence Force or delegate for DFSA/DLSM.

Civilian Chief Officer for National Medal

Persons with simultaneous service in the ADF and in approved civilian organisation(s) during one period can count this towards 2 medals

National Medal


ADF = Australian Defence Force DFSA = Defence Force Service Awards DLSM = Defence Long Service Medal

“defence long service award” = a medal or decoration or clasp under the DFSA regulations or a medal or clasp under the DLSM regulations or a long service award in the Imperial system of honours for service in the ADF. “defence service” = service with the ADF which is DFSA efficient service or DLSM qualifying service.

Annex 6 Important Contacts

National Medal enquiries:
Awards and Culture Branch

Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet

PO Box 6500


Tel: (02) 6271 5617

Fax: (02) 6271 5662

The Registrar of Awards

Australian Honours and Awards Secretariat

Government House


Tel: (02) 6283 3533 (Switch)
(02) 6283 3663 (Medals and Awards Officer

Fax: (02) 6283 3620

Australian Bravery Decorations enquiries:
Australian Honours and Awards Secretariat

Government House

Tel: 1800 552 275 (Freecall)
(02) 6283 3606

Fax: (02) 6283 3620

Defence-related enquiries
Enquiries by current or former ADF members seeking to use the provisions of regulations 19, 20, 21 or 23.
Directorate of Honours and Awards

Department of Defence

T - 4


Tel: 1800 111 321 (Freecall)

Fax: (02) 6266 1065

Annex 7 The National Medal insignia, and when and how to wear it

Description of National Medal insignia

The National Medal is a circular bronze medal, 38 millimetres in diameter, ensigned with the Crown of Saint Edward in bronze, containing the Arms of The Commonwealth of Australia within a rim carrying the inscription “The National Medal: For Service” and suspended by means of a bar from a riband, 32 millimetres wide and having 15 alternating gold and blue vertical stripes (see illustration on p.40). The Medal shall be worn on the left breast on all occasions when full size orders, decorations and medals are worn.

A miniature of the National Medal, being a replica one half of the size of the National Medal, suspended from a miniature riband, shall be worn on all occasions when miniatures of order, decorations and medals are worn.

The award of a clasp to the National Medal is recorded by a bar 5 millimetres wide and having along its surface 10 raised hemispheres.

When the ribbon bar is worn alone, the award of a clasp is indicated by the addition of a representation of the National Medal, 5 millimetres in diameter.

Wearing of the National Medal

Everyday Use

The ribbon bar may be worn with all forms of dress at the discretion of the holder. However, it should not be worn at the same time as full-size or miniature medals.

Day Functions

When attending day functions such as Anzac Day or Remembrance Day ceremonies the full-size insignia is worn on the left breast.

Evening Functions

Holders of long service medals wear miniature medal(s) on the left breast of their uniforms, evening dress or lounge suits on such occasions as official receptions and dinners; or an evening event arranged for the investiture of others with their insignia of the National Medal. Ribbon bars are not worn.

Illustration of the National Medal

1 See Commonwealth of Australia Special Gazette No. S. 101 of Thursday, 4 April 2002. Also available through the Australian honours website,

2 See regulation 19.

3 See regulations 19, 20, 21 and 23. Annex 5 summarises the eligible circumstances.

4 See regulation 5(a)(ii).

5 See regulation 23.

6 See regulations 5(b) and 10(1)(c) and the note following regulation 17(1).

7 See regulation 22.

8 See regulation 17.

9 The public ambulance operations of the Priory in Australia of the Order of St John of Jerusalem and of its successor, St John Ambulance Australia, are included in this description, although a different approval date is specified for the latter in regulation 2(3). The public ambulance operations of this organisation only exist in some Australian states and territories.

10 Although the Australian Protective Service was integrated with the Australian Federal Police on 1 July 2004, service with the Australian Protective Service as a separately defined entity is still eligible service.

11 Defined at regulation 2.

12 See paragraph (e) of the definition of ‘government organisation’ at regulation 2.

13 See paragraph (d) of the definition of ‘government organisation’ at regulation 2.

14 ‘approved government organisation’ is defined at regulation 2. Determinations are made under regulation 4.

15 See regulation 5.

16 See regulations 2(6) and 18(4).

17 See the definition at regulation 2.

18 ‘approved voluntary organisation’ is defined at regulation 2. Determinations are made under regulation 9. The requirements are specified in regulation 10.

19 See regulation 17.

20 See regulations 2(7) and 18(4).

21 See regulation 10(1)(c).

22 This is specified in the definition of ‘voluntary organisation’ in regulation 2.

23 This is also specified in the definition of ‘voluntary organisation’ in regulation 2.

24 See regulation 10(1)(d).

25 See regulation 10(1)(e).

26 See regulation 10(1)(g).

27 See regulation 10(1)(f).

28 Regulation 10(1)(h) requires an approved voluntary organisation to allow access to its premises and records by the Minister or the Minister’s delegate. Regulation 24 provides the power for the Governor-General to cancel an award of the Medal. Regulation 28 provides that the Governor-General may revoke a determination for an approved government or voluntary organisation.

29 See regulation 11.

30 See regulation 12.

31 See regulations 24 and 28.

32 See regulation 10(1)(h).

33 See regulation 2(9)(b).

34 See regulation 16.

35 See regulation 18(4).

36 See regulation 27.

37 See regulations 5(a), 10(1)(a) and 17.

38 This is provided for by regulation 9(2).

39 See regulation 14(b)(ii). Regulation 14(b)(i) also provides that at least one day of a person’s service must be on, or after, 14 February 1975 (the date on which the National Medal was established).

40 See regulations 2(6) and 2(7).

41 See regulation 16(2).

42 ‘Diligent service’ is defined at regulation 17(4).

43 See regulation 17(2).

44 See the definition in regulation 2.

45 ‘defence long service award’ is defined, in regulation 2, to include these three classes of awards.

46 This is provided for in regulation 16(1)(c).

47 See regulations 20(3) and (4).

48 See regulations 16(1)(a) and (d).

49 That is, the criteria set out under regulation 17.

50 See regulation 14.

51 See regulation 16(1)(a).

52 Criteria for assessing a person’s diligence are set out in regulation 17(4).

53 That is, the requirements of diligence, training and performance of the primary function set out under regulation 17.

54 The letters which awardees are entitled to use after their names.

55 See the definition of ‘government organisation at regulation 2.

56 See regulation 5(b).

57 See regulation 17(1)(b).

58 See regulations 14, 15 and 17.

59 This requirement is specified in regulation 10(1)(a).

60 See regulations 10(1)(c) and 17.

61 “government organisation” is defined in regulation 2.

62 See regulation 10(1)(c).

63 See regulation 10(1)(d).

64 See regulation 10(1)(f).

65 See regulations 10(1)(e) and 17(1)(b).

66 See regulation 10(1)(f).

67 See regulations 10(1)(e).

68 See regulations 14, 15 and 17.

69 See Chief Officers’ Obligations at section 6 of this Manual.

70 See regulation 10(1)(h).

71 See regulations 11, 12 and 13.

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