After months of community consultation, a Senate Inquiry into Strengthening Multiculturalism, has made 13 strong recommendations that will lead to a more inclusive Australia, says the Committee’s Chair, Australian Greens Leader Dr Richard Di Natale.
“Australia is a proud multicultural nation. It’s a huge part of our history and it is what makes our nation great. At a time when hateful and divisive rhetoric is rising amongst some political leaders both here and abroad, these recommendations are more important than ever, said Di Natale.
“We cannot forget how important and influential leadership is. We must tackle head on the hateful and divisive language that threatens our community’s social cohesion. This came through loud and clear from almost every submission and from every witness.”
“I heard from people who were afraid, afraid of the impact of the language being used and the actions being taken, by politicians and the media.
“That’s why the Committee strongly recommends introducing a Parliamentary Code of Multicultural Ethics, while the Australian Press Council also develops a broadcast media Code of Conduct.
“Hand-in-hand with this goes a great additional recommendation to introduce a cadetship for culturally and linguistically diverse individuals within all public broadcasters.
“Encouraging commercial broadcasters to raise awareness of Australia’s diversity in programming while prohibiting the often harmful misrepresentation of our culturally and linguistically diverse communities is vital if we are to avoid going down the same path as the United States and Donald Trump.
“The Committee also recommended an Australian Charter of Rights, something which I believe is long overdue and the Greens will be pursuing.
“It is vital that we protect the rights of all Australian’s to be free from discrimination, vilification and misrepresentation.
“Other recommendations focused on the role of the Government in updating our education system to introduce an intercultural curriculum.
“Racism is a disease that feeds on the fear of the unknown. So it is equally important we teach our children the values of respect and inclusion.
“The Greens are a party that listens to Australians, and make no mistake; your voice has been heard, loud and clear. We are asking the government to act on all of the recommendations in the report, to build a fairer, more inclusive society.”