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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 6 Hansard (13 June) . . Page.. 1622..

MR SMYTH (continuing):

The Framework for a Multicultural Australian Capital Territory 2001-2005 that I am tabling today is another significant example of the Government's commitment to multiculturalism. It is a practical, whole-of-government approach to multicultural affairs in the ACT, and was developed as a result of extensive public consultation.

The Government wishes to record its appreciation to all of those who have contributed their views and suggestions.

I want to emphasise that this Framework is part of a coordinated strategy.

The Framework for a Multicultural Australian Capital Territory 2001-2005 has been developed in the context of the Government Plan 1998-2001 and is consistent with the Government's Social Capital agenda.

Links between people and groups in the community build social capital. A significant number of Canberrans belong to the 160 multicultural community groups, including ethnic clubs, schools, churches, cultural and social networks that make up the multicultural landscape of the ACT.

These community groups work in partnership with the government, community and business sectors to strengthen Canberra's social capital. The cultural diversity of the ACT population is significant in building the social capital of Canberra.

Within this overall structure, the Framework for a Multicultural Australian Capital Territory 2001-2005 is one of a series of strategic plans focusing on the needs and aspirations of particular groups within the community, including

The ACT Women's Action Plan 2000-2001, March 2000;

Towards a Society for All Ages: Forward Plan for Older People in the ACT 2000-2003, June 2000; and

ACT Young People's Framework 2001-2003, April 2001;

together with the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Whole of Government Strategic Framework which is currently under development:

In addition, An Equity and Diversity Framework for the ACT Public Service has been developed to prevent discrimination within the ACT Public Service and to promote an inclusive workplace environment.

The vision for a multicultural ACT expressed in the Framework for a Multicultural Australian Capital Territory 2001-2005 is:

To strengthen partnerships among government, business and community sectors so that cultural and linguistic diversity continues to be embraced, valued and utilised in the ACT.

This vision is underpinned by three goals:

embracing cultural and linguistic diversity is about ensuring that all Canberrans enjoy equitable access to services and programs;

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