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Time to comment on the Draft Multicultural Strategy 2009 – 2012

By johnboy 27 January 2009 70

John Hargreaves is announcing the start of public consultation on the Draft Multicultural Strategy 2009 – 2012.

Apparently it is the fruit of the Multicultural Summit 2008. At just 23 pages (and one of them a novel “Acknowledgement of country”) it won’t take that long to wade through.

The principles outlined are interesting, particularly the responsibilities they plan to lump on you in the name of human rights, which some could view as restricting your own rights to freedom of thought and expression:

    — All individuals in the ACT have the right to maintain, practise and promote their culture and language.

    — All individuals have the right to cultural expression and understanding (regardless of the adequacy of their English language skills).

    — All individuals have the right to practise their religious and spiritual beliefs.

    — All individuals have the right to equitable access to government services and programs.

    — All individuals have the right to participate in, and to contribute to, the social, cultural and economic life of the community.

    — All individuals have a responsibility to respect the culture, language and religion of others, within the legal and
    constitutional framework set by the laws of the ACT and Australia.

    — All individuals have a responsibility to treat everyone in a fair and respectful manner.

    — All individuals have a responsibility to recognise and accept the linguistic and cultural assets of the ACT.

Feedback on the draft Strategy 2009-2012 should be directed to Rebecca Glasgow at the Office of Multicultural Affairs by 20 March 2009. Rebecca can be contacted on (02) 6205 5302 or rebecca.glasgow@act.gov.au .

What’s Your opinion?


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70 Responses to
Time to comment on the Draft Multicultural Strategy 2009 – 2012
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Thumper 10:24 am 30 Jan 09

In the cities, the British culture barely exists.

Very, very true I’m afraid.

However, the country is still delightful.

dexi 10:19 am 30 Jan 09

The opt out of culture clause. Could we add that to the strategy?

The individual right not to participate in culture.

farnarkler 9:56 am 30 Jan 09

This thread could go on forever so I’m out.

mad murali 6:16 am 30 Jan 09

Interesting comments and pretty long bow you’re drawing farnarkler (pardon the long bow reference to British culture). As far as i can see, the strategy says that the rights of ALL individuals are protected,not just migrants (and I’m assuming it’s taken to mean within the laws of the land; ie your fears of FGM sweeping the land will be eased as will the fears of Muslim Australians of being stereotyped as practitioners of terror simply by being Muslim), and BTW am really curious as to a definition of your term ‘Australian people’. Please explain.

dexi 4:30 pm 29 Jan 09

VY I was speaking a collective we.

“Also, do the original inhabitants respect MY culture?”
Sure they do.

This continent already has a diverse culture that is thousands of years old. One we do not respect or understand.

What makes you think I don’t respect their culture?

Also, do the original inhabitants respect MY culture?

New Yeah 2:04 pm 29 Jan 09

farnarkler said :

I am all for multiculturalism as long as those who move from other cultures and religions are prepared to accept that they must not try and impose their beliefs on the Australian people.

I’m sure there are plenty of beliefs held by Australian people that could actually be improved. You appear to be assuming that the beliefs held by Australian people are perfect and that no other culture can influence them positively. Surely this is not what you mean!

astrojax 1:15 pm 29 Jan 09

really, these principles outline a mono-cultural australia: one in which all practices by individuals are tolerated (presumably it is simply moot to have to add ‘within the boundaries of the law’).

what, really, is ‘multi’cultural? isn’t ‘our culture’ one where differences are tolerated – or at least, isn’t this what this document is purporting to achieve?

and re: If it hadn’t been the British, it would have been the French or the Dutch. Let’s be very clear about that.

i have always regretted it wasn’t the spanish who invaded us – that way we’d have decent food and sensible siestas as part of our culture! (notwithstanding that english black pudding is superior to the morcilla common in spain…)

Danman 11:21 am 29 Jan 09

David Koresh was an extremist – I dont see anyone wanting to ban people/religions who DO NOT cover their faces.

dexi 10:20 am 29 Jan 09

farnarkler… “I am all for multiculturalism as long as those who move from other cultures and religions are prepared to accept that they must not try and impose their beliefs on the Australian people.”

This continent already has a diverse culture that is thousands of years old. One we do not respect or understand. One, we as a people still impose our western/foreign beliefs on. Yet we expect new arrivals to respect the white/English culture, that in this country is only 200 years old.

JB I think I’m making a point that is on topic. As far as a multi-cultural strategy goes this one is just words coming from the wrong place.

This document seek only to guide individuals within the legal and constitutional framework set by the laws of the ACT and Australia. My lawyer advisors that we already have that.

Its fair to argue that Australia is a different land with its own culture. When you come here you should respect that. This document has at least acknowledged our culture in its “novel, Acknowledgement of country”. That is the culture evolved from this land. Not one imposed from a foreign land.

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