Page 2441 - Week 07 - Thursday, 4 August 2022
I am acutely aware of some of the concerns of migrant and refugee communities regarding diversity and inclusion in the workforce. And I am pleased to say that I recently worked with Dr Paterson, who advocated on behalf of representations made to her, for the improvement of government communications to better include and promote people from CALD backgrounds as a target employment group for the ACT public service. The need was clear and the fix was achievable. I will let Dr Paterson share her own remarks on this motion, including any updates on this joint work.
It is clear that improving diversity and inclusion is a journey. It is not a destination. The ACT government will continue its significant work to encourage diversity in all aspects of public life, including as a progressive and inclusive employer through the ACT public service.
I, and I am sure all members here, look forward to seeing this work progress. Again, I thank Mr Braddock for bringing this motion to the Assembly. I am pleased to support it in its amended form.
DR PATERSON (Murrumbidgee) (4.44): I stand in support today of Ms Cheyne’s amendment to Mr Cain’s amendment to Mr Braddock’s motion. I am sorry that I do not have anything to contribute amendment-wise! But I would like to thank Mr Braddock for this motion today and Minister Cheyne for her words.
I wish to note my support for the employment of people from culturally and linguistically diverse walks of life and representing all groups of our Canberra community within the ACT government.
I note that the ACT government has a relatively high proportion—around or more than one-fifth—of ACT public servants who are from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. It is great to see and reflects our diverse community and the many different skills, experience, and talent from many different multicultural groups who make up the great tapestry of life in our wonderful city.
I had previously made representations on this matter on behalf of constituents to Minister Cheyne. I have been really pleased with her response, which I have been able to provide back to constituents. The minister responded to my advocacy to revisit the importance of cultural and linguistic diversity as a relevant target employment group on employment websites and in the marketing relating to the ACT public service. I understand that further work in this space is already underway and that there will be a change in wording to that effect on employment websites in the near future.
I also understand that the ACT government will be developing an internal whole-of-government inclusion intranet site to support inclusive workplaces. The site will be a central information hub for shared resources, including bite-sized learning, accessible information and inclusion reference materials. I understand that employees will be able to find information through this intranet on networks that they may like to join and on how they can take practical steps to create inclusive workplace cultures.
Long-running programs, such as the government’s Work Experience and Support Program, are examples of the ways in which the ACT government already supports a diverse and inclusive workplace, including the employment of recent arrivals to the