Australian Army Indigenous Strategy
Australian Army Indigenous Policy
Army supports the Australian Government’s Closing the Gap commitment made in 2008 to improve the lives of Indigenous Australians. The Army Indigenous Strategy was originally authorised in November 2008 and is updated biennially with the latest review to be released in early 2012.
The Army Indigenous Strategy focuses on five key goals:
• Improve Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) participation rates,
• Improve Army Capability,
• Contribute to the development of Indigenous Communities,
• Be more culturally aware, and
• Enhance Army reputation as an integrated employer.
The Army Indigenous Strategy Steering Committee, established in March 2009, is responsible for coordinating the implementation of the Strategy across Army’s Commands. It includes Army Indigenous representatives from a cross section of remote, regional and urban areas, as well as rank, gender, Regular and Reserve soldiers. The Committee reports on Army’s performance against the Defence Reconciliation Action Plan including current initiatives within Army.
Declaring Indigenous heritage is voluntary, however, we ask all Indigenous Army members to consider self-identification. Accurate self-identification will highlight the truly diverse nature of Army and helps us to:
• Collect accurate data for identifying trends – good and bad – in Indigenous recruitment and retention issues, and
• Ensure the provision of the most effective policies, programs, strategies and initiatives for Indigenous Defence personnel.
Defence Indigenous Policy
The Directorate of Indigenous Affairs (IA) was established in July 2008 to provide a single point of contact for Defence Indigenous matters. IA is located within the Fairness and Resolution (FR) Branch, People Strategies and Policy Group (PSPG).
IA is responsible for:
• Providing a whole-of Defence approach to Indigenous matters,
• Providing a central link between Defence and other important external stakeholders,
• Managing the Defence Reconciliation Action Plan (DRAP) 2010 – 2014, and
• Managing the ADF Indigenous Employment Strategy (IES) 2007 – 2017.
Army has assisted the following IA activities over the past 12 months:
• Defence Indigenous Development Program (DIDP) is a Whole-of Government initiative, led by Defence, primarily for Indigenous people from remote areas in northern Australia. The DIDP aims to provide young Indigenous adults with life skills and confidence to secure and sustain continuous employment of their choice and it also helps them to be role models within their communities.
• Defence Indigenous Pre Recruitment Course (IPRC) is an 8-week IPRC program prepares young Indigenous people for the Defence Force Recruiting process. It focuses on pre-employment training, literacy and numeracy, aptitude, interview technique, communication, leadership, teamwork, self confidence, physical conditioning and experiential visits to Navy, Army and Air Force Bases to observe Australian Defence Force employment conditions first-hand.
Army is represented at the following forums sponsored by IA:
• The Defence Indigenous Reference Board (DIRB) comprises representatives from the senior leadership of Defence, with plans to include external Indigenous stakeholders. The DIRB meets quarterly and is responsible for ensuring that strategic Defence Reconciliation Action Plan initiatives are developed, implemented and reported in a transparent and consultative manner.
• Army participates in the Australian Defence Force Indigenous Roundtable bi-monthly with IA and the other Services. The ADF Indigenous Roundtable aims to ensure that the single services are kept up to date on the development of ADF Indigenous initiatives, and are provided with the opportunity to present service-specific input as part of the development and implementation of these initiatives.
For further information, please call the Directorate of Workforce Strategy on (02) 6265 1251.
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