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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 06 Hansard (Thursday, 7 June 2018) . . Page.. 2278 ..

purposes and for the development of equity and diversity programs. All reporting is in the form of aggregate tables from which individuals cannot be identified. The information is used in accordance with the provisions of the Privacy Act 1988 (Cwth) and is held as Staff in Confidence. See response to question 6 above.

Government agencies—cultural capability
(Question No 1291 and 1293)

Mrs Kikkert asked the Minister for Community Services and Social Inclusion, upon notice, on 13 April 2018:

Do government agencies have any mandatory minimum reporting indicators for culturally diverse customers; if not, why not; if so, (a) which government agencies report on such indicators and what indicators are reported, (b) how are relevant staff made aware and trained in both the minimum mandatory indicators for culturally diverse customers as well as the importance of collecting this information and (c) how often are these data indicators aggregated and published, where are they published, and are they available for public viewing.

Ms Stephen-Smith: The answer to the member’s question is as follows:

(1) Please refer to the table at Attachment A.

Directorate Responses to Questions on Notice 1291 & 1293 from Mrs Kikkert –
13 April 2018

Community Services Directorate


The Community Services Directorate (CSD) has developed and implemented a Common Dataset that provides the directorate with instruction on how to collect data about service users. The Common Dataset provides guidance on the mandatory collection of data on the cultural and linguistic diversity of our clients, and is currently being implemented across the Directorate.


All CSD data collection areas are in the process of implementing the Common Dataset. Relevant data items include country of birth, main language spoken at home and proficiency in English. Main language spoken at home is selected from drop down options that reflect the top fourteen languages, other than English spoken in Canberra. This is derived from CSD’s client management systems and the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) census data. Where the Common Dataset is yet to be implemented, such as in Housing ACT, this information is collected through the Registration to Apply for Social Housing Assistance in the ACT process.

In addition, the Common Dataset includes extended items that are service specific data collection indicators. These include; whether or not a translator is required, the ancestry, ethnicity or cultural background, the year of arrival in Australia, the residency status and the visa category of the client. Both core and extended data items are aligned with data collection standards from the ABS, Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) and the Specialist Homelessness Information Provision (SHIP) standards.


CSD recognises the importance of collecting data to develop a greater understanding of our clients and to drive service improvements with a person-centred approach. In tandem with the Common Dataset, the Common Dataset Working Group was established to support staff collecting mandatory data. The Group brings together key stakeholders with expertise in data collection and service delivery from across CSD and provides advice to staff to support the accurate collection of Dataset items.

In addition, data quality processes are undertaken throughout the year, which requires that managers and staff address issues related to the quality of information collected.

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