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Australian Bravery Decorations

The Australian Bravery Decorations recognise acts of bravery where people selflessly put themselves in jeopardy to protect the lives or property of others.

"The Bravery Decorations are a way for Australians to recognise ordinary people who do extraordinary things - those who, without pause, put themselves at personal risk to protect others. These outstanding individuals are inspirational and deserve to be celebrated and honoured."

Governor-General, General the Honourable David Hurley AC DSC (Retd)

There are four levels of bravery awards to recognise the actions of individuals, as well as an award (established in 1990) to recognise acts of bravery by a group of people involved in a single incident:

Cross of Valour

The Cross of Valour (CV) is the non-combat equivalent of the Victoria Cross and is awarded only for acts of the most conspicuous courage in circumstances of extreme peril.

Star of Courage

The Star of Courage (SC) is awarded only for acts of conspicuous courage in circumstances of great peril.

The Bravery Medal

The Bravery Medal (BM) is awarded only for acts of bravery in hazardous circumstances.

Commendation for Brave Conduct

Commendation for Brave Conduct may be awarded for other acts of bravery which are considered worthy of recognition.

The insignia for the Group Bravery Citation

Group Bravery Citation shall be awarded for a collective act of bravery, by a group of persons in extraordinary circumstances that is considered worthy of recognition.


More detail is available in the Australian Bravery Decorations handbook. The book includes:

  • Letters Patent and regulations
  • images and descriptions of what each award looks like; and
  • guidance on how decorations are worn.