After speaking with the families of victims Tori Johnson and Katrina Dawson, who died in the Sydney siege last week, the City of Sydney council will begin removing flowers and messages from the scene of the tragedy ahead of forecast wet weather.
Volunteers from the Red Cross, State Emergency Service and Rural Fire Service, and disaster recovery Chaplains will assist Sydney staff in collecting the floral tributes, notes, messages and cards left at various sites around Martin Place throughout the past week.
Premier Mike Baird said the flowers will be mulched for future use at a site to be determined in consultation with the Johnson and Dawson families.
“At an appropriate time we’ll also discuss with them the establishment of a permanent memorial,” Baird said.
“For the time being a marquee will remain in Martin Place for floral tributes. There are also many other ways for people to continue to pay tribute and express their sympathies.”
A funeral service for Johnson will be held today at St Stephens Uniting Church in Macquarie St, Sydney at 11am (AEDT), while a private service will be held for Dawson at 3pm (AEDT) at Sydney University’s Great Hall.
Condolence books will remain available for the public to sign at the Sydney Opera House and Parliament House until the end of January. There’s also an online condolence book on the NSW government website where people can add their personal tributes.
The books will be bound in several volumes and a complete copy will be provided to each family.
The Dawson family has established a charitable organisation in Katrina’s name, The Katrina Dawson Foundation, which will focus on the education of women. Donations can be made here.
The Johnson family has nominated the beyondblue charity group, dedicated to helping people and their families living with depression and anxiety for donations in Tori’s name. They can be made here.