Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Peoples
- Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Peoples – Overview
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples – The Case for Action
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples – Leading Practice
- Yes! Campaign Resource Hub
- Constitutional Recognition and the Uluru Statement from the Heart
- Navigating the Voice referendum
Understand the 10 truths to centre Indigenous Australians’ voices to create workplace inclusion
Before your organisation works on building workplace inclusion for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, it is important to understand the 10 truths to centre Indigenous Australians’ voices to create workplace inclusion.
Cultural load is the (often invisible) additional workload borne by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the workplace, where they are either the only Indigenous person or one of a small number of Indigenous people. This includes, extra Indigenous-related work demands that non-Indigenous colleagues do not have, expectations to educate non-Indigenous colleagues about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and racism, and expectations to talk on behalf of all Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people.
Organisations need to understand cultural load, and recognise and reward it in job descriptions. This provides Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander employees with the opportunity to spend time on and be fairly compensated for this important aspect of their work.
Career development is an important aspect of Indigenous workplace satisfaction and wellbeing. Some steps to build sustainable career development for Indigenous staff could include:
- Listen to and develop a real understanding of your Indigenous staff.
- Build an accessible, meaningful Indigenous staff network that provides a culturally safe space to network.
- Enable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff to advise how organisational policies and practices can be made more culturally safe and inclusive.
- Provide Indigenous mentors to employees entering the workforce for the first time.
Racism manifests in many ways and can have a dramatic impact on individuals, leading to identity strain, as well as reductions in job satisfaction and wellbeing. To address racism, organisations should:
Develop, regularly review and promote racism complaint procedures and anti-discrimination compliance training.
Train managers on how to constructively address and effectively resolve racism and exclusion.
Train all staff on what constitutes racist behaviour and how to respond appropriately to a person raising a concern about racist behaviour.
Gari Yala survey findings shed light on which initiatives are most likely to have a positive impact on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff. The initiatives are:
- Formal career development programs for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander employees.
- Racism complaint procedures.
- Indigenous (Leader/Elder) support or sponsorship of new and young staff.
- Anti-discrimination compliance training that includes reference to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
- Celebrating Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander days or weeks of significance.
For leading practice examples, see Gari Yala (Speak the Truth): Centreing the experiences of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Australians at work