Over 47,000 Aboriginal people live in Victoria, with government projections expecting this number to rise to over 80,000 people by 2021.
Victorian councils work alongside Aboriginal Victorians to build respect, recognition and promote reconciliation.
Over the past 10 years, councils have increased their activities and engagement with their Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
While activities vary from council to council, they may include:
- Flying the Aboriginal flag
- Developing a Reconciliation Action Plan
- An Acknowledgement of Country and Welcome to Country in partnership with Traditional Owners
- Inviting Traditional Owners to participate in council activities and events
- Promoting respect and recognition of Traditional Owners through acknowledgement on municipal signs and council buildings
- Engaging Aboriginal people in local planning, decision-making, employment, programs and services
- Formalising council’s relationship with Traditional Owners through an Agreement, Memorandum of Understanding or protocol
- Protecting and celebrating Aboriginal heritage through council’s arts, culture and public space initiatives, programs and events
- Encouraging Aboriginal people to stand for council election
- Establishing an Aboriginal Advisory Committee
- Improving access to and participation in community services by Aboriginal people and communities.
Less than 100 Aboriginal people are known to be employed in the Victorian council workforce of 44,000 employees. An Aboriginal employment project by the MAV is assisting Victoria’s 79 councils to increase their employment of Aboriginal people.