Reconciliation Action Plans are about taking good intent and turning it into action.
The Black Lives Matter protests that have erupted across the globe have caused a whole lot of Australians to rethink the issues affecting Indigenous communities.
The health, wealth and employment gaps between Indigenous Australians and the remainder of the inhabitants are well known, but the protests created new urgency to do something about them.
In July, the Australian government unveiled new Shut the Gap targets together with reducing Indigenous incarceration rates.
For organisations that feel the urgency act there is one obvious solution – a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).
In 2006, Reconciliation Australia introduced RAPs as a way for organisations to include strategic reconciliation initiatives as a part of their enterprise plans. The goal of a RAP is to create significant opportunities for your organisation to actively help and recognise Indigenous Australians. Like many initiatives, reconciliation is a process that may evolve as you and your organisation start to take action.
RAPs are broken down into four maturity levels that mirror the place organisations are in their reconciliation journey. They’re: Reflect, Innovate, Stretch and Elevate. Each has a corresponding RAP type organisations can pursue. For example, the Innovate degree is for organisations that already understand where they’ll improve on Indigenous issues and have begun taking action to actively address them.
Step one for all organisations is to determine its maturity level. “Contact the RAP team at Reconciliation Australia and discover out which stage you will start at,” says Anthony. “The RAP workforce will send you a template that can outline what you should do. There are some basic compulsory actions required by Reconciliation Australia corresponding to celebrating national Reconciliation Day and growing knowledge of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures. After that, it’s concerning the modifications you can make.”
Because a lot of organisations will start on the Replicate stage, this guide will outline the pillars you might want to establish to start your reconciliation journey.
This is the place it all begins.
It might probably help to look into why RAPs are so important as well as the present points facing Indigenous people. Reports reminiscent of Close the Gap can provide context to your RAP and might make it easier to with the following step.
Part of a profitable RAP is establishing help for reconciliation initiatives throughout your complete organisation. In most cases this needs to start at the top.
“Most often I find that if individuals are presented with the information, they stunning quickly get on board with desirous to be part of the reconciliation movement,”
“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander individuals are three per cent of the population. They can’t do the heavy lifting in terms of change and infrastructure change, societal change, or altering attitudes.
“RAPs are a way of stepping in and making meaningful change.”
Over 1,000 organisations have formalised RAPs, and their implementation has had a real impact on improving worker understanding of Indigenous issues, the Reconciliation Australia 2018 RAP Impact report found. This can have a circulation-on effect. It makes staff more engaged with their community and they often choose to donate to, or volunteer with, Indigenous organisations as a result.
A RAP additionally solidifies your organisation’s commitment to making a culturally safe work setting, which expands your recruiting pool by making your workplace a more attractive employer to Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander employees.
Set up a working group
The following step is to type a working group that can oversee the complete RAP process. This group will need to be made up of varied representatives from all sectors of your organisation.
The group is accountable for planning and implementing the RAP, so it might want to consist of members who have some precise power to make modifications in the organisation, and members who understand it from a policy and culture perspective.
Lastly, for the RAP to be really profitable, you’ll want involvement from members who work with customers or shoppers, so that people outside your organisation understand you are trying to make a difference.
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