Supporting inclusive workplaces
Wear It Purple Day
This year on Friday 26 August, Wear It Purple day had a simple message, ‘You have the right to be proud of who you are!”.
The Wear It Purple campaign raises awareness and shows support for rainbow young people to be safe, supported and empowered in each of their environments.
The day also saw the WA Equal Opportunity Commission (EOC) continue its work to support the rights of the LGBTI community.
EOC staff commenced joint training with the Public Sector Commission through the University of Western Australia in the ALLY program, a network run by Australian universities that advances understanding, inclusion, and support of LGBTI employees and students on Australian university campuses.
The ALLY program has been operating since 2002 and has now branched out into government and business. Information about future ALLY training sessions by the WA Equal Opportunity and Public Sector Commissions will soon be available.
Working in the community
Regional visit to Geraldton and Moora
The Commission’s Community Education Program frequently travels to regional areas of Western Australia, to help build awareness and understanding about human rights and skills in exercising those rights across a diverse range of communities.
In a recent trip, the Commission’s community trainers Steve Goodall and Mike Harte travelled through Geraldton and Moora over three days, providing a series of rights-based education training and awareness sessions with community leaders and local organisations.
The visit was part of the EOC’s work with the Department of Sport and Recreation to provide Member Protection Information Officer (MPIO) training to various local sporting clubs in the township. While in Geraldton the team also held equal opportunity awareness sessions with representatives of community organisations at Geraldton Lotteries House. In co-operation with the Department of Corrective Services, workshops were held with male and female prisoners at the Greenough Regional Prison and the officers also met with Assistant Superintendants at the facility.
Whilst in Moora, Steve and Mike had the opportunity to speak at a Chamber of Commerce and Industry meeting, provided an equal opportunity awareness session at the Community Resource Centre, and held a rights-based training meeting with representatives of the Aboriginal Community.
The visit also provided opportunities to raise and discuss local issues affecting the communities in the areas of employment, goods and services.
For more information about community education and training, visit www.eoc.wa.gov.au/community-education-training
Promoting Inclusive Sporting Environments
The Port Adelaide Football Club’s cultural awareness training has been used to help a banned spectator after the banana throwing incident at a game last month. While the club has responded quickly and effectively to the situation in this instance, it is always preferable for organisations to take preventative action to minimise the risk of incidents such as this occurring in the first place.
The Equal Opportunity Commission is a co- sponsor of the Play by the Rules website which provides information and resources to assist sporting organisations to create safe fair and inclusive environments. See below for link.
The Commission also offers education to all organisations , including Sports Associations and clubs, staff and volunteers about their obligations under discrimination law.
If you or your organisation is interested in having a training session, customised to your needs please go to this linkhttp://www.eoc.wa.gov.au/contact-us
Pledge to Support Women in STEM Training and Careers
The Commission has signed a pledge organised by the Department of Local Government and Communities, to encourage girls to get involved in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) fields and trades.
The Women in STEM and Trades Pledge encourages Western Australian businesses, community organisations, public sector agencies and individuals to support increased training and career opportunities for girls and women in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) fields and trades.
Female participation in STEM training and careers is significantly lower than male participation, particularly in non-health, engineering and related technologies, and information technology fields. Women are also significantly underrepresented in trades training and trades workforces. This is despite evidence showing that the number of jobs requiring STEM skills is increasing.
See more at: https://www.dlgc.wa.gov.au/CommunityInitiatives/Pages/Women-in-STEM-and-Trades.aspx#sthash.iEQxYh0w.dpuf
Calling for Nominations for the Human Rights Awards 2016
If you know someone in WA, a person, organisation or business that’s doing inspiring work promoting equality awareness in the local community, then let them know nominations for the Australian Human Rights Awards are now open.
Some of the best nominees are people who wouldn’t dream of putting themselves forward, which is why we encourage you to do it for them!
Nominations can be submitted under eight categories:
- Human Rights Medal
- Young People’s Human Rights Medal
- Law Award
- Business Award
- ‘Racism. It Stops With Me’ Award
- Tony Fitzgerald Community Individual Award
- Community Organisation Award
- Media Award
Nominations are open until 11 September and finalists will be recognised at the Human Rights Award ceremony on 9 December 2016 at the Westin Hotel Sydney.
For more information about the Awards categories or the nomination process, please visit the Human Rights Awards website or firstname.lastname@example.org.
From the Vault
Archive of historical decisions
The Commission recently placed on its website historical decisions of the Equal Opportunity Tribunal (EOT) which are not available elsewhere.
An example of a decision included in this archive from 1995 is summarised below.
A qualified chartered accountant, who had suffered from rheumatoid arthritis since childhood, was dismissed from a new job after only three days.
The complainant claimed that there was discrimination on the grounds of impairment, while the managing Director held the view that the complainant was not able to do the job because she was slow moving around the office.
Although complainant’s impairment was discussed at the job interview, the court found that the assessment of whether she could perform the job as required was not properly made, and that there was a direct causal link between her impairment and her dismissal.
The tribunal found that the employer had discriminated against the complainants in dismissing her from employment on the ground of her impairment and awarded $13,978 for financial losses, and $6,500 for hurt and humiliation. [EOT 17 of 1993]
Read the full judgement at http://www.eoc.wa.gov.au/publications/equal-opportunity-tribunal-decisions
Poster resources available
The Equal Opportunity Commission website has a collection of posters available to increase awareness about discrimination. You can find them under the heading of Publications.
Under Publications there is also library of factsheets, reviews, reports and previous e-bulletins about rights and discrimination issues.www.eoc.wa.gov.au/publications
What's coming up at the Commission
You can register for all Commission courses on the Community Education page.
September 14 Introduction to Equal Opportunity Law
Equal Opportunity Essentials for Managers and Supervisors
September 20 & 21 Equity Grievance Officer Roles (2 days)
October 12 Recruitment and Selection – Are You Getting it Right?
October 18 Sexual Harassment – Know where the line is
October 19 Contact Officer Role
Can we help?
The Commissioner’s telephone and online enquiry service provides information on whether your circumstances can be addressed under the Equal Opportunity Act.
The Commission can deliver free education sessions and workshops for community groups and advocates about rights under the Equal Opportunity Act.
The Commission website has a wealth of information for community members and organisations about their rights and responsibilities under the Act.
Find more information on the Commission's webpage Your rights
Contact us on (08) 9216 3900, 1800 198 149 (country callers) (08) 9216 3936 (TTY) or email email@example.com
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You can find past issues of the e-bulletin here
For more information please contact us or call the EOC Public Affairs Officer on (08) 9216 3911 or for WA country callers 1800 198 149.
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