The ACTU launched its first Reconciliation Action Plan at the organisation’s NAIDOC celebrations at the Bunjilaka Aboriginal Cultural Centre in Melbourne last night.

“Launching the Reconciliation Action Plan was a wonderful way for us to come together and celebrate the
contributions that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples make to the union movement and our country,” said ACTU President Ged Kearney.

The ACTU is the peak union body representing 46 affiliated unions and the interests of almost two million workers and their families across Australia.

“The ACTU and our affiliated unions want to play a part in shaping our communities and our society so that we all value the rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.” said Ms Kearney.

ACTU Indigenous Officer Kara Keys played a key role in developing the Reconciliation Action Plan.

“Australian unions have supported the long struggle of Indigenous peoples for recognition of their civil rights and treatment as equals,” said Ms Keys.

“The Reconciliation Action Plan is a road map for how unions continue to support and ‘walk the talk’ of reconciliation.

“We have developed a number of actions based around relationships, respect and opportunities,” said Ms Keys.

Actions include:

  • Establish mentoring and work experience opportunities for Indigenous people
  • Investigate opportunities within the ACTU to increase Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples employment opportunities
  • Provide opportunities for staff to undertake more significant cultural immersion
  • Continue to develop external relationships and build partnership with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations, local Elders and councils
  • “By working in solidarity with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and the union movement, we hope to create opportunities for mutual understanding and deeper participation,” said Ms Kearney.