Reconciliation Action Plans are about taking good intent and turning it into action.

The Black Lives Matter protests that have erupted across the globe have caused lots of Australians to rethink the problems affecting Indigenous communities.

The health, wealth and employment gaps between Indigenous Australians and the rest of the population are well known, but the protests created new urgency to do something about them.

In July, the Australian authorities unveiled new Shut the Hole targets including reducing Indigenous incarceration rates.

For organisations that feel the urgency act there is one apparent solution – a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).

In 2006, Reconciliation Australia launched RAPs as a way for organisations to include strategic reconciliation initiatives as a part of their enterprise plans. The intention of a RAP is to create meaningful opportunities to your organisation to actively assist and recognise Indigenous Australians. Like many initiatives, reconciliation is a process that will evolve as you and your organisation start to take action.

RAPs are broken down into 4 maturity levels that mirror where organisations are in their reconciliation journey. They’re: Mirror, Innovate, Stretch and Elevate. Every has a corresponding RAP type organisations can pursue. For example, the Innovate stage is for organisations that already understand the place they will improve on Indigenous points and zarnesti01 have begun taking action to actively address them.

Step one for all organisations is to find out its maturity level. “Contact the RAP staff at Reconciliation Australia and find out which level you will start at,” says Anthony. “The RAP staff will ship you a template that may define what you want to do. There are some basic compulsory actions required by Reconciliation Australia comparable to celebrating national Reconciliation Day and increasing knowledge of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures. After that, it’s in regards to the changes you may make.”

Because numerous organisations will start on the Replicate stage, this guide will outline the pillars you want to establish to start your reconciliation journey.


This is where it all begins.

It could actually help to look into why RAPs are so necessary as well as the present issues going through Indigenous people. Reports such as Close the Hole can provide context to your RAP and might enable you with the following step.

Safe help

Part of a profitable RAP is establishing assist for reconciliation initiatives across your complete organisation. In most cases this needs to start on the top.

“Most frequently I discover that if people are offered with the info, they pretty quickly get on board with desirous to be a part of the reconciliation movement,”

“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are three per cent of the population. They will’t do the heavy lifting when it comes to change and infrastructure change, societal change, or changing attitudes.

“RAPs are a way of stepping in and making meaningful change.”

Over 1,000 organisations have formalised RAPs, and their implementation has had a real impact on improving employee understanding of Indigenous issues, the Reconciliation Australia 2018 RAP Impact report found. This can have a circulation-on effect. It makes staff more engaged with their community and so they often choose to donate to, or volunteer with, Indigenous organisations as a result.

A RAP also solidifies your organisation’s commitment to creating a culturally safe work environment, which expands your recruiting pool by making your workplace a more attractive employer to Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander employees.

Establish a working group

The subsequent step is to type a working group that will oversee your complete RAP process. This group will should be made up of various representatives from all sectors of your organisation.

The group is in control of planning and implementing the RAP, so it will need to consist of members who have some actual energy to make adjustments within the organisation, and members who understand it from a policy and tradition perspective.

Lastly, for the RAP to be really successful, you’ll need involvement from members who work with prospects or purchasers, so that folks outside your organisation understand you are trying to make a difference.


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