Council adopts Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan

Townsville City Council’s Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan (September 2021 – June 2024) has been formally adopted in today’s Council meeting.

Council has worked with Reconciliation Australia and local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander representatives to create Council’s third Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) – Townville City Council Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan (September 2021 – June 2024).

A Stretch RAP is Reconciliation Australia’s third level within their workplace RAP framework and is built on three main pillars – relationships, respect and opportunities. This framework focuses on embedding reconciliation initiatives into organisational practices to become business as usual, implementing long term strategies, and working towards defined targets and goals.

Council is proud to adopt its Stretch RAP and to focus on long-term strategies to advance reconciliation internally and within Council’s sphere of influence.

Mayor Jenny Hill said adopting the plan was an important step towards solidifying Council’s commitment to embedding reconciliation initiatives into the organisation’s cultural footprint.

“As Townsville’s largest employer, Council has a responsibility to close the economic and employment gap. We are in a position to strengthen our relationships with Townsville’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and help the wider community work towards a deeper understanding of the world’s oldest cultures,” Cr Hill said.

“I am proud of Council formalising this commitment through the Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan’s adoption today. This plan includes measurable actions that Council is committed to delivering to build a positive two-way relationship and increase mutual respect for the contributions Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people make in Townsville and across the country.”

Cr Hill said Council had a number of ongoing projects which showcased the organisation’s commitment to reconciliation.

“Celebrating First Nations people in Townsville is important to Council, which is why we have several projects that celebrate Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture. These include the Aboriginal Cultural Art Installation Project, the Spirit of Reconciliation Awards, the Embracing Our Stories Project, the Belgian Gardens Cemetery Cultural Artwork Space, and the popular Welcome Baby To Country ceremony,” Cr Hill said.

“Council also has significant procurement spend with local businesses owned by First Nations people. The organisation’s corporate plan aims to increase procurement expenditure to Indigenous-owned businesses by 5 per cent by 2026.

“These existing commitments will be furthered by the adoption of the Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan. We at Council recognise that we play a very important role in supporting change through initiatives like the Reconciliation Action Plan and we will continue to do the work to model reconciliation to the wider Townsville community.”

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