Description of Medals
The Cross of Valour is the highest civilian award that Australia can confer, being higher in precedence than the Companion of the Order of Australia.
The Cross of Valour (Gold), the Star of Courage (Silver) and Bravery Medal (Bronze) each have ribbons of different combinations of magenta and blood red, representing the colours of venous and arterial blood.
The medals for these awards are each of a different design but share the common elements of the Australian Coat of Arms and the Federation Star. They are ensigned with the Crown of St Edward and are suspended from the ribbon by a bar inscribed "For Valour", "For Courage" or "For Bravery", depending on the award.
The Commendation for Brave Conduct is a silver-gilt badge featuring a sprig of wattle mounted on a blood-red backing ribbon.
The Group Citation for Bravery is a bronze and silver rectangular badge, with a multi leaf sprig of wattle representing the nature of group participation - the coming together of the many to create a single entity.
Recipients of the Cross of Valour are entitled to use the postnominals CV after their name.
Recipients of the Star of Courage are entitled to use the postnominals SC after their name.
Recipients of the Bravery Medal are entitled to use the postnominals BM after their name.
THE ORDER OF WEARING AUSTRALIAN HONOURS AND AWARDS
VICTORIA CROSS VC
George Cross GC
CROSS OF VALOUR CV
KNIGHT/LADY OF THE GARTER KG/LG
KNIGHT/LADY OF THE THISTLE KT/LT
Knight/Dame Grand Cross of the Order of the Bath GCB
ORDER OF MERIT OM
KNIGHT/DAME OF THE ORDER OF AUSTRALIA AK/AD
Knight/Dame Grand Cross of the Order of St Michael and St George GCMG
KNIGHT/DAME GRAND CROSS OF THE ROYAL VICTORIAN ORDER GCVO
Knight/Dame Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire GBE
COMPANION OF THE ORDER OF AUSTRALIA AC
Companion of Honour CH
Knight/Dame Commander of the Order of the Bath KCB/DCB
Knight/Dame Commander of the Order of St Michael and St George KCMG/DCMG
KNIGHT/DAME COMMANDER OF THE ROYAL VICTORIAN ORDER KCVO/DCVO
Knight/Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire KBE/DBE
Knight Bachelor (NB: Confers title of "Sir" - no postnominals)
OFFICER OF THE ORDER OF AUSTRALIA AO
Companion of the Order of the Bath CB
Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George CMG
COMMANDER OF THE ROYAL VICTORIAN ORDER CVO
Commander of the Order of the British Empire CBE
STAR OF GALLANTRY SG
STAR OF COURAGE SC
Companion of the Distinguished Service Order DSO
DISTINGUISHED SERVICE CROSS DSC
MEMBER OF THE ORDER OF AUSTRALIA AM
LIEUTENANT OF THE ROYAL VICTORIAN ORDER LVO
Officer of the Order of the British Empire OBE
Companion of the Imperial Service Order ISO
MEMBER OF THE ROYAL VICTORIAN ORDER MVO
Member of the Order of the British Empire MBE
CONSPICUOUS SERVICE CROSS CSC
NURSING SERVICE CROSS NSC
Royal Red Cross (1st Class) RRC
Distinguished Service Cross DSC
Military Cross MC
Distinguished Flying Cross DFC
Air Force Cross AFC
Royal Red Cross (2nd Class) ARRC
MEDAL FOR GALLANTRY MG
BRAVERY MEDAL BM
DISTINGUISHED SERVICE MEDAL DSM
PUBLIC SERVICE MEDAL PSM
AUSTRALIAN POLICE MEDAL APM
AUSTRALIAN FIRE SERVICE MEDAL AFSM
AMBULANCE SERVICE MEDAL ASM
EMERGENCY SERVICES MEDAL ESM
MEDAL OF THE ORDER OF AUSTRALIA OAM
ORDER OF ST JOHN
Distinguished Conduct Medal DCM
Conspicuous Gallantry Medal CGM
George Medal GM
CONSPICUOUS SERVICE MEDAL CSM
AUSTRALIAN ANTARCTIC MEDAL AAM
Queen's Police Medal for Gallantry QPM
Queen's Fire Service Medal for Gallantry QFSM
Distinguished Service Medal DSM
Military Medal MM
Distinguished Flying Medal DFM
Air Force Medal AFM
Queen's Gallantry Medal QGM
ROYAL VICTORIAN MEDAL RVM
British Empire Medal BEM
Queen's Police Medal for Distinguished Service QPM
Queen's Fire Service Medal for Distinguished Service QFSM
COMMENDATION FOR GALLANTRY
COMMENDATION FOR BRAVE CONDUCT
Queen's Commendation for Brave Conduct
COMMENDATION FOR DISTINGUISHED SERVICE
War medals, campaign medals, active service medals and
POLICE OVERSEAS SERVICE MEDAL
HUMANITARIAN OVERSEAS SERVICE MEDAL
CIVILIAN SERVICE MEDAL 1939-1945
Imperial Service Medal
Coronation, Jubilee, Remembrance and
Commemorative medals, (in order of date of receipt)
DEFENCE FORCE SERVICE MEDAL
RESERVE FORCE DECORATION RFD
RESERVE FORCE MEDAL
DEFENCE LONG SERVICE MEDAL
AUSTRALIAN CADET FORCES SERVICE MEDAL
CHAMPION SHOTS MEDAL
Long Service Medals
ANNIVERSARY OF NATIONAL SERVICE 1951-1972 MEDAL
Independence and Anniversary Medals, (in order of date of receipt)
Foreign Awards, (in order of date of authorisation of their acceptance and wearing)
General Note:The Unit Citation for Gallantry, the Meritorious Unit Citation and the Group Bravery Citation are not positioned in The Order of Wearing Australian Honours and Awards.For members of uniformed services, they should be worn in accordance with the dress rules of the particular Service concerned. Civilian personnel awarded the Group Bravery Citation should wear the insignia on the left lapel or left breast. Should other honours or awards have been awarded, the Group Bravery Citation should be worn centrally, approx 10mm above these.
How to Wear Medals on Civilian Clothing
Recipients receive a full-size piece of insignia and a miniature. They may also receive a ribbon bar or a small lapel badge.
Recipients of Imperial awards are invested with the main piece of insignia and can purchase privately ribbon bars and miniatures.
Full size insignia is normally worn at daytime social occasions, placed on the left side of the coat or dress, above the left breast. Full size insignia is worn at ceremonies for Anzac Day and Remembrance Day observances and at formal social gatherings where the wearing of insignia has been mentioned in the invitation.
Miniatures are normally worn only at evening occasions and placed in the same position as full size insignia. Invitations normally state if decorations are to be worn.
Some awards, such as the Companion in the Order of Australia have a neck badge and some Imperial awards have large breast stars. These should be worn as well as the miniatures.
Lapel badges are a feature of many Australian awards and recipients may wear them as often as they can when other insignia is not being worn.
Ribbon bars are not worn on civilian attire, but may be worn on the left hand side on the uniforms of most public services: police and fire services, parliamentary attendants, etc, in accordance with the uniform codes of those services.