Greater Shepparton City Council adopted its first Reconciliation Action Plan at the Ordinary Council Meeting on 18 June.
Meeting on 18 June.
Council worked with Reconciliation Australia over a lengthy period to draft the Plan, which now has Reconciliation Australia endorsement.
The Greater Shepparton City Council Reconciliation Action Plan (Reflect) July 2019 – June 2020 is an internal organisational plan that outlines Council’s commitment to reconciliation and to ensuring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and cultures are respected, acknowledged and celebrated.
The Plan is a ‘Reflect’ plan which enabled Council to reflect upon the work it has been doing over many years, and to identify opportunities that better benefit Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and the broader community.
“Council’s first Reconciliation Action Plan has a strong focus on truth telling. It contains some information about the distressing and uncomfortable events that happened in the local area, as well as throughout Australia,” Greater Shepparton City Council Mayor Cr Kim O’Keeffe said.
“Council feels acknowledgement of the true history of Australia must occur before true reconciliation can be achieved.”
Through a timeline, the Plan also acknowledges the heroic actions of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in the face of atrocities and adversity. People such as Aunty Marge Tucker, Shadrach Livingstone James, William Cooper, Nanny Nora Charles, Geraldine Briggs AO, Jack Patten, Sir Douglas Nicholls and many others, all advocated for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples in many ways.
They are examples of the type of people that all Greater Shepparton residents need to know about, and feel proud of.
The Plan contains actions in the areas of Relationships, Respect, Opportunities and Governance and Tracking Progress.
“The Plan is for one year in duration and it is hoped the Plan will be a strong message to the community and Council staff that Council is serious about reconciliation and will further its positive work in this area,” Cr O’Keeffe said.
The Reconciliation Action Plan will help achieve Council’s vision for a future where Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples have equitable access, inclusion and opportunities, and where Aboriginal and Torrs Strait Islander Peoples’ cultures are honoured and respected.
To view the Reconciliation Action Plan please visit Council’s website.