We recognise the importance of building strong relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employees and communities as we strive to improve the economic and social outcomes for all Australians. Attracting and retaining skilled and capable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders will help us to deliver our business outcomes. The department is keen to positively influencing APS Indigenous recruitment and retention and to meet the wider agenda of employment and equity outcomes for Australia’s first peoples.
For these reasons, the department:
- Promotes and advances a unified approach to reconciliation
- Cultivates working relationships and partnerships with the Indigenous community
- Maintains a culture of shared learning and understanding amongst all staff
- Takes practical steps to attract, retain and develop Indigenous employees.
Reconciliation Action Plan 2015-2018
Our Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) was developed in consultation with employees and Indigenous stakeholders. It publicly formalises the department’s contribution to reconciliation by identifying clear actions with realistic targets.
Indigenous Employee Network
In recognition of the pride and respect we have for the First Australians, the department has established an Indigenous Employee Network (IEN). Since its inception in February 2014 the IEN has created a sense of belonging for its members and provides and avenue to walk in two worlds within the Australian Public Service. It gives involved staff the opportunity to:
- Share experiences involving the celebration of Indigenous culture, history and continuing care for country.
- Be a sounding board/consultative group on specific strategic issues and Indigenous employment initiatives for the Department.
- Discuss/explore and promote issues of shared interest.
- Connect with other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employees (internal and external to the department) and provide support to one another
Indigenous Traineeship Programme
The Indigenous Traineeship Programme is one of the ways through which the department recruits Indigenous employees. The traineeship is a twelve month training and developmental programme designed to provide trainees with the skills and knowledge to prepare them for a successful career within the department and the Australian Public Service (APS).
The objectives of the programme are for trainees to:
- Integrate into the culture of the department and to understand its business
- Gain knowledge and develop skills and capability at the APS 1-2 level
- Develop an understanding of Government and the APS
- Engage, participate and contribute to the work of the Department
- Complete a Certificate III in Government
Cultural Awareness Training and Events
The department recognises the significance of the following annual events: