SPECIAL REPORT: Reconciliation Action Plans are used by hundreds of organisations across Australia to deliver better outcomes. Click through to our Indigenous Development feature.
According to Reconciliation Australia there has been an increase in organisations taking real action to support reconciliation. These are encouraging trends for all Australians. Reconciliation should at its most fundamental level be a values-based proposition and support a diverse and empowered workforce.
RAC’s own formal commitment to reconciliation commenced with the introduction of our first Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) more than five years ago. The RAP program includes a series of frameworks (Reflect, Innovate, Stretch and Elevate), each offering a different level of engagement and support.
RAC’s Reflect RAP was launched in 2014 and was followed by our Innovate RAP in 2016. We are now progressing toward a Stretch RAP which will further embed important reconciliation practices and values into the fabric of RAC.
Some changes have been small; all of our meeting rooms now have Aboriginal names (and their corresponding meanings), we have acknowledgement of traditional owner protocols which teams use prior to meetings and we provide corporate wardrobe options that feature bespoke Aboriginal designs.
Other approaches are of a larger scale and aim to improve the socio-economic outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people including:
We are particularly proud of our Community Ambassador Program. Through a partnership with Jawun — a not-for profit that builds capacity and empowers Indigenous people and their communities — RAC people can apply for a six-week secondment in the Kimberley region where they use their skills to support local communities.
Equally as important as doing, is understanding; which is why we go to great lengths to measure the difference we’re making both within our organisation and across Western Australian communities.
Organisations are in a unique position to champion true reconciliation in Australia. Those which embrace the opportunity by embedding it into their culture and strategic planning will be best prepared for the Australia of tomorrow.