The Cinderella State


A Map of Australia’s States and Territories


The term “Cinderella State” is used in Australian politics when one believes their state is of a disadvantage to other Australian states in regards to its relation to the federal government pertaining to their economic and political needs. It comes from the character Cinderella, who herself was neglected and abused by her family. The term has been used to describe every state of Australia.

Tasmania – 1926 and 2005

Tasmania is referred to as the Cinderella State because of not only its small size but also Australia’s abuse of Tasmania’s economic abilities. Tasmania has also been called this because of their lack of political support or organization provided by Australia.

South Australia – 2005 and 2011

More recently than Tasmania, South Australia has been called the Cinderella State. This has been for two reasons: their inability to create jobs to heal their declining economy and their economic troubles after focusing on mining exports.

Western Australia – 1920s and 1930s and 1969

Western Australia had a secessionist movement in the 1930s because of the lack of attention and finance from other states. In 1969, Western Australia felt they were discriminated against politically because of their low population and said they may as well still be the Cinderella State. As a secessionist movement arises again, it can be said Western Australia is again the Cinderella State because of its overpopulated coast.

Queensland – 1948

The Lord Mayor of Kingaroy, Queensland called Queensland the Cinderella State because of their disproportionately small amount of federal funding compared to other states.

New South Wales – 1978

New South Wales was called the Cinderella State because of its high population and disproportionately low federal funding and distribution.

Victoria – 1949

Victoria has been called the Cinderella State because of the Australian government’s apparent favor of New South Wales regarding the distribution of resources.


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