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Better Together


Georges River is a rich and culturally diverse community. We have a growing population of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds who live, work and meet in our LGA.

We celebrate our diversity and are committed to supporting a socially inclusive and connected community. We want to make sure everyone feels safe and welcome, which is why we launched the Georges River “Better Together” anti-racism campaign on 21 March 2022.  

This four-year campaign aims to promote diversity, encourage social cohesion and call out discrimination in our community. We will work with the community to provide people with the knowledge and tools to be able to recognise, stand up to, challenge and report racism when they see it, and to support those who are directly affected by acts of racism.


We are always Better Together.



Bystander Anti-Racism Training

We are excited to announce as part of Better Together we will be delivering Bystander Anti-Racism Training. We have worked with the Challenging Racism Project at Western Sydney University and Advance Diversity Services to create this training specifically for the Georges River community to identify racism and be given the tools on how to act. This project is funded through the NSW Social Cohesion Grants for Local Government.

Sessions run from September until November. Check out the Eventbrite for more details and how to register for these training sessions.  


  • What have we been doing?

    We acknowledge, support and celebrate the diversity that makes Georges River so unique. We support a range of events that celebrate and promote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and culturally and linguistically diverse cultures and heritage, such as NAIDOC Week, the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, Lunar New Year and Refugee Week. Our Diversity and Inclusion Committee provides regular cultural awareness training for Council staff.

    We are members of many committees and organisations that work to support diversity and inclusion and make a stand against racism:

    • Refugee Welcome Zone Georges River Council - Multicultural Communities
    • Welcoming Cities, a worldwide community of local governments who actively seek to promote inclusion Welcoming Cities | Connecting Thriving Communities
    • NSW anti-racism working group 
    • St George Multicultural Network
  • What is racism?

    Racism is the process by which systems and policies, actions and attitudes create inequitable opportunities and outcomes for people based on race. Racism is more than just prejudice in thought or action. (Australian Human Rights Commission).

    Interpersonal Racism or 'everyday racism' Racism that occurs in interactions between individuals or groups of people, often in everyday settings. It can come in the form of abuse, harassment, humiliation, exclusion or expressed in jokes or comments. 
    Systemic Racism Can be more difficult to identify, because it is often so entrenched in our societies or institutions that it is perceived as ‘normal’. It refers to cultural norms, laws, ideologies, policies and practices that result in unequitable treatment, opportunities and outcomes.
    Microaggressions Include those casual everyday racist incidents such as making racist jokes, referring to racial stereotypes or denying the existence of racism.
  • Effects of racism

    Racism makes us sick. Studies show that for people who experience racism, there is greater chance of experiencing anxiety and depression.

    You may have seen this advertisement by Beyond Blue – strong messaging for long term effects of racism.


    It is not just mental health and wellbeing that is impacted. Direct experiences of racism have been shown to contribute to a range of negative physical outcomes, such as heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes.

    Check out these peer reviewed articles from the BMC Public Health Journal:

  • What can you do to stand up and challenge racism?
    A good ally to people who experience racism is someone who actively recognises and addresses racial inequality around them. It is about being aware of inequality, calling it out where it exists, listening to people who experience it, and elevating their voices.  
    There are some helpful resources on how to respond to racism developed by the Australian Human Rights Commission campaign Racism. It Stops With Me!
     

    Check out Western Sydney University's Bystander Anti-Racism Campaign. The project developed an understanding of bystander anti-racism as a means of countering racism. 

    Did you know, almost 40 per cent of all racist incidents occur in public spaces, including on public transport. This video aims to teach bystanders what they can do when they witness racism in a public space.

  • Reporting racism

    If you witness or experience racism, you may want to report it, seek support, or support those who have been negatively impacted.

    You should always call the police on 000 if you think you or somebody else may be in danger.

    There are several ways that you can lodge a complaint about racism or discrimination with the Australian Human Rights Commission:

    Phone

    Info line: 1300 656 419 (local call)
    TTY: 1800 620 241 (toll free)

    Email

    complaintsinfo@humanrights.gov.au

    Post

    Australian Human Rights Commission
    GPO Box 5218
    Sydney NSW 2001

    Online Complaints | Australian Human Rights Commission

     

    You can also report in the following ways:

    Office of the eSafety Commissioner

    For an incident that takes place online. 

    Anti-Discrimination NSW

    If you believe that you have experienced discrimination, sexual harassment, vilification or victimisation, you can make a complaint. You must put your complaint in writing.

    Call It Out/The First Nations Racism Register

    The First Nations Racism Register is a simple and secure way for people to report incidents of racism and discrimination towards First Nations Peoples. 

    Islamophobia Register

    Making a report to the Islamophobia Register does not involve a formal investigation, however it is a secure reporting mechanism to build knowledge around incidents of Islamophobia and anti-Muslim sentiments that are occurring across Australia. 

    Asian Australian Alliance Register

    You can complete the COVID-19 Racism Incident Report to help collect data around incidents of racism for Australians who are of Asian background. 


    You can access additional resources via:



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