We have a long and proud history of strong relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in our community, and this RAP will be yet another step forward in progressing meaningful reconciliation with First Nations people.
Our city is defined by the relationships formed in our community, and we can only thrive when all members of our community feel welcomed, acknowledged and supported. This RAP is our formal commitment to reconciliation, and is both a practical and a symbolic measure to advance real change through a suitably place-based, localised and culturally centred action plan.
The first pillar in the plan is Respect, which focuses on strengthening the community’s understanding and respect towards Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture, history and experiences. Some of the ways we’ll be doing this is by supporting greater representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voices and stories at the annual Write Around the Murray Festival, acknowledging cultural history by reviewing the naming of our local assets, investigating options for Acknowledgement of Country and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artwork at the Albury Airport. The plan also allows for implementing traditional Wiradjuri language names for streets, and formal Acknowledgement of Country signs on highway entrances to AlburyCity.
Relationships is another important pillar in the plan, focusing on building strong relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and Non-Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander members of our community. We’ll be further building on our positive relationships by organising at least one National Reconciliation Week event each year, and hosting a community flag raising event to bring the whole community together to celebrate our Indigenous culture.
The plan also focuses on the pillar of Opportunities, which is about providing equal opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participation to help Close-the-Gap that exists between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and Non-Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. We’ll be doing this by advertising job vacancies to effectively reach Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander stakeholders, reviewing Human Resources and recruitment procedures and policies to remove barriers to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participation in our workplace, and employing an Aboriginal Curator to work at the Library Museum.
The last pillar in the plan is Governance, which is about ensuring that effective governance and reporting is established and maintained throughout the entire reconciliation journey. We’ll meet at least four times per year to drive and monitor RAP implementation, publicly report against our RAP commitments annually, and submit a traffic light report to Reconciliation Australia at the conclusion of this RAP.
We’d like to thank the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people of our local community for their participation and commitment to this important plan. Their participation has ensured it truly reflects a localised and place-based commitment to reconciliation built on the voices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community members.
We’re excited to formally start our reconciliation journey and look forward to seeing the beneficial outcomes of this RAP and the positive change it promises for our entire community.
The Reconciliation Action Plan can be viewed on the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community page on the AlburyCity website.