Ethnic Communities’ Council of Victoria (ECCV)
The Ethnic Communities’ Council of Victoria (ECCV)’s mission is to work to ensure that we remain a member driven peak body committed to empowering people from culturally diverse backgrounds. We strive to give voice to multicultural Victoria. We strive to advocate for human rights, freedom, respect, equality and dignity for ethnic and multicultural communities and in building a socially cohesive and inclusive Victorian community.
The organisation advocates and lobbies all levels of government on behalf of multicultural communities in areas like human rights, access and equity and improving services. As our core business, we advocate on any issue that is of concern to our members.
We are proud to have been the key advocate for culturally diverse communities in Victoria since 1974.
ECCV Pre-Budget Submission 2021-22
The ECCV has released its 2021-22 Pre-Budget Submission to the Victorian Government.
The submission calls for the development of a new Multicultural Strategy for Victoria and recommends more than $150 million is allocated in May’s State Budget as part of a broader revamp of the Victorian Government’s approach to engagement with migrant and refugee communities.
The ECCV is recommending a range of initiatives focused on mental health, youth, employment, disability, older people from CALD communities, as well as a boost to the Government’s Anti-racism Strategy and community-led COVID-19 response and recovery initiatives.
Intercultural Young Advocacy Leaders
Ageing Well Coordinator
The Victorian Government has announced that Victoria will return to COVIDSafe Summer restrictions from 11.59pm on Wednesday 17 February, 2021.
However, there will be some adjustments to existing COVIDSafe Summer settings.
- Masks will be required everywhere indoors (except in residential homes), and will be required outdoors where it is not possible to physically distance, unless a lawful exemption applies.
- Private gatherings up to five visitors, including dependents, to be able to visit a home per day (not including infants under 12 months).
- Public gatherings limited to 20 people.
- Religious gatherings can resume with density limits (no patron cap)
- Hospitals and care facilities visits will be limited to one household once per day plus existing exceptions – such as for end-of-life reasons, parents of minors, interpreters.
It has been wonderful to enjoy some well-earned freedoms and be able to reconnect with family and friends over summer, thanks to the vigilance and sacrifice of all Victorians during the difficult lockdowns of 2020.
This is shaping up to be a busy and exciting year for the ECCV, after a period of significant growth. In 2020, our expertise was sought from State and Federal Government agencies and organisations wanting culturally-responsive approaches to community issues.
The ECCV’s expanded team is working on a range of collaborative policy, planning and community outreach programs and projects, from the aged care and disability sector to the state’s COVID-19 health response. We are proud to be helping to provide a trained bicultural workforce to engage with and respond to the changing needs of our multicultural community.
The ECCV welcomed December’s report by the Victorian Ombudsman, Deborah Glass, which found that the extraordinary COVID-19 hard lockdown of the Flemington and North Melbourne public housing towers in July 2020 breached residents’ human rights and was contrary to law. Many of the issues raised in the Ombudsman’s report about the speed and severity of the lockdown, with no advance notice or explanation to residents, were in line with our submission to the Ombudsman’s inquiry.
We have been encouraged by the steps the State Government has taken in recent months to address some of the issues faced by residents and the lessons learnt, including an investment in new social housing, investment in new community facilities and a commitment to capturing resident voices early and consult with organisations that work with these communities to find solutions to community-level problems.
Through our knowledge, experience and strong member networks, organisations such as the ECCV have an increasingly important role to play informing future responses and improving services through a multicultural diversity, equity and inclusion lens.
We look forward to sharing updates on the upcoming FECCA conference in November, which will bring together community representatives from across the country at a critical time.
We are also pleased to be providing a pathway for next-generation leaders to develop their knowledge and skills of governance and leadership in our culturally diverse community through the ECCV Intercultural Young Advocacy Leadership (IYAL) Group. Following a successful pilot of the program, we are currently calling for applications from young people from culturally diverse backgrounds to join the IYAL group, which will add another important voice for multicultural Victoria.
The Scanlon Foundation’s recent Mapping Social Cohesion report and handling of Collingwood Football Club’s racism report demonstrate there is still much work to be done to tackle racism and discrimination, counter prevailing negative attitudes about some CALD communities in Australia and rethink the basis of Australian identity in our increasingly diverse multicultural community.
We understand that you may be feeling worried, anxious and overwhelmed about COVID-19 and the impacts it has on your daily life, family and community, especially when we are experiencing social distancing. These resources can help keep you informed, connected and safe:
COVID-19 Phone Numbers
- Coronavirus hotline: If you suspect you may have the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) call the dedicated hotline – open 24 hours, 7 days – on 1800 675 398
If you are an NDIS participant you can also call the national hotline on 1800 020 080
If you need an interpreter, please call 131 450 first.
- Department of Social Services Support Line – If you’ve lost income because of COVID 19 measures, call the dedicated hotline to see what support you can access – 1300 653 227
- National Debt Helpline: If you are in financial difficulty, free support is available at the National Debt Helpline: 1800 007 007. You can speak to a financial counsellor to get advice.
- Business Victoria coronavirus hotline: Businesses seeking advice about whether they are affected can also call the Business Victoria coronavirus hotline on 13 22 15.
- Australian Human Rights Commission: For information regarding discrimination or any other human rights violation, please contact National Information Service on 1300 656 419 (restricted hours)
- If you are distressed, please seek support from Beyond Blue 1300 22 4636 or Lifeline 13 11 14
- In-language information about racial discrimination and race hate complaints translated in to 63 languages
- Important information from VCOSS regarding COVID-19 and the community sector
- National Debt Helpline’s COVID 19 Financial Survival Guide and Resources
- Cancer Council ‘Cancer & COVID-19’ English factsheet here. Support and information resources are available in 12 languages. If you would like to speak to someone in your own language, please call 13 14 50 and ask for Cancer Council or the Coronavirus Health Information Line.
- Important information for renters, business and others from Consumer Affairs Victoria
- Important information for NDIS providers: Minimising the risk of exposure to COVID-19
- Australia Council for the Arts COVID 19 Response package to support artists, arts practitioners, arts groups and arts organisations coping with the impact of COVID-19.
- Easy English COVID 19 Information sheets and resources
- Australian federal government’s economic response to COVID 19
- Latest updates and information on COVID 19 from the Victorian government’s Department of Health and Human Services
- FAQS regarding the virus, its transmission and testing, and preventative measures.
- In-language information regarding COVID 19 from Victorian government’s Department of Health and Human Services
- Latest updates and information from the Australian government’s Department of Health
- You can get help and information on looking after our mental health and wellbeing from: Lifeline and Beyondblue
- Embrace Multicultural Mental Health also have information for CALD communities
- Contact numbers of support services for women experiencing family violence from InTouch – Multicultural Centre Against Family Violence
- Warm Safe Home for Older Victorians who may be experiencing financial hardships can connect with a financial counsellor who may be able to help
- From VCOSS: financial and emergency relief support & specialist services available to migrants, refugees and international students
For more information, please write to us on firstname.lastname@example.org or call 9354 9555.
We are proud to recognise the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin nation, as the first Australians, cultural leaders and traditional custodians of the land from which we advocate for ethnic community groups. We pay our respects to their elders, past & present.