Recognising merit

The ODT has a suggestion for honouring honours:

Whereas people carrying the titles of “sir” and “dame” have a permanent public brand or trade-mark of their achievements simply in the titles, and are far more likely than most to be given opportunities to wear their decorations at formal occasions, there is little encouragement to enable the public routinely to know that their less highly honoured fellow citizens have also been recognised by the Queen.

Virtually all countries with honours systems in Europe, for example, also give recipients a gratis and discreet lapel badge or ribbon, which recipients may wear on an everyday basis if they so choose, and without embarrassment.

In this country, similar badges were made available for past and present recipients from 1996, but they are hardly widely worn and the Government ought to do what it can to encourage the custom.

At the same time, it should be routine for all official correspondence to honours recipients to carry their proper title in the address.

By such small, but symbolically important measures, our honours system might be regarded in the broader community as being much more than the “one-day wonder” it is in danger of becoming.

This is a good idea.

The people I know who’ve received “lesser” honours are hard working, selfless individuals whose efforts more than earned their award.

They are all modest people too and may prefer not to display their award, but a discreet badge or broach would give them the choice.

One Response to Recognising merit

  1. Jeremy says:

    As the ODT stated Homepaddock – those badges are avaiable and have been for sometime – over to the individual to choose to wera them or not.

    All NZ Royal Honours also carry post-nominal letters an once again there is nothing stopping those individuals using the letters on every occasion.


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