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HRM TV: A fair go for Aboriginal employment


Indigenous Australians are 3 per cent of the population, yet they account for only 1.7 per cent of the workforce. What are the barriers to Aboriginal employment?

There are ways employers can take the lead and improve employment prospects for Aboriginals, says Mick Gooda, the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner. Gooda focuses on creating a business case for why more companies need to create Aboriginal employment opportunities, as well as ways to be inclusive.

Initiatives such as substantive equality, targeted recruitment, internships, and relationships between Aboriginal communities and businesses help to reverse employment disadvantage experienced by the Indigenous community.

Commissioner Mick Gooda features in HRMonthly magazine’s April Cover story on Aboriginal employmentAHRI members receive HRMonthly 11 times per year as part of their membership. Find out more about AHRI membership here

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Geoffrey Stelmach
Geoffrey Stelmach
8 years ago

A raw statistical figure can be misleading to suit a particular agenda hence skepticism. Therefore it is prudent without corroborating information and data that the figure should always be challenged and followed up with typical questions from the above article such as: – What are the statistical reasons for the remainder 1.3% Aborigines that are employed? e.g. medical, location, education level, unskilled etc. The point in question is that all may not be capable of acquiring or doing work. Are the remainder pursuing work? Are their checks and balances to confirm that the remainder are seeking work. Is the entire… Read more »

Lisa W
Lisa W
8 years ago

Hi Geoffrey, The article’s link ‘substantive equality, target recruitment’ has good information. You should also read the Closing the Gap report. For example: “According to the Prime Minister’s most recent Closing the Gap report, the proportion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 15-64 years who are employed fell to 47.5 per cent in 2012-13, while the proportion of non-Indigenous Australians who are employed increased to 75.6 per cent.” If you’re interested… Location: Here’s where Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people live: NSW 31.13%, QLD 28.22%, WA 13.18%, NT 10.28%, VIC 7.07%, SA 5.59%, TAS 3.61%, and ACT 0.92%.… Read more »

Dan Erbacher
Dan Erbacher
8 years ago

Lisa W you have not answered the questions raised by Geoffrey, and instead have resorted to taking an unjustified pot-shot at him with juvenile comments that have nothing to do with the tenets of the questions he was posing. Anyone who has lived in remote aboriginal or islander communities, and/or in regional areas (and yes, I have spent my entire life living in four remote aboriginal communities, and regional areas of Qld) – and which is stated in your figures above – a large percentage of aboriginal or islander persons reside in remote or regional areas. These areas have the… Read more »

Peter Johnson
Peter Johnson
7 years ago

Geoffrey and Dan, the point which Mick and many others, including Lisa, make is that Indigenous people continue to be underrepresented in most professions and mainstream employment. I recently chaired an evaluation of the More Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Teachers Initiative (MATSITI), a Commonwealth funded program with the objective of increasing the number and capacity of Indigenous teachers in schools. Indigenous students made up 2.1% of full-time Australian school students in 1990, increasing to 5.3% in 2015. Indigenous teachers have only recently passed the 1.0% mark nationally. There were 72 Indigenous teachers in 1979. This is now estimated at… Read more »

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