The Ethnic Communities’ Council of Victoria (ECCV) is pleased to announce the appointment of former Victorian Premier, the Hon Steve Bracks AC, as our new patron.

The appointment was announced at last night’s ECCV Annual General Meeting, where Mr Bracks was keynote speaker.

Mr Bracks is one of Victoria’s longest-serving Premiers, holding office from October 1999 until July 2007. During this period, Mr Bracks also served as Minister for Multicultural Affairs and Minister for Veterans’ Affairs.

Mr Bracks assumes this role following the retirement of previous patron, former Governor of Victoria, the Hon Justice Linda Dessau AC CVO, who succeeded ECCV’s inaugural patron, former Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser.

ECCV and Mr Bracks share a longstanding history. In 1999, shortly after his election as Premier, ECCV met with Mr Bracks to call for multiculturalism to be enshrined in an Act of Parliament and the enactment of racial vilification legislation.

During his tenure, Mr Bracks demonstrated his strong commitment to building an inclusive and harmonious Victoria, introducing the Racial and Religious Tolerance Act (2001), the Multicultural Victoria Act (2004), and the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act (2006) – making Victoria the first Australian state to put formal protection of human rights into law.

After retiring from politics in 2007, Mr Bracks has continued to lead an active life in public service, holding board positions in a range of sectors such as education and law. In 2010, Mr Bracks received a Companion of the Order of Australia for his services to the Parliament and community of Victoria.

Born in Ballarat in 1954, with Lebanese ancestry, Mr Bracks has a deep understanding of the cultural and social fabric of our state, and to this day, remains a leading advocate for multiculturalism and reconciliation with First Nations people.

ECCV warmly welcomes Mr Bracks as patron. We believe his appointment will greatly advance our mission to advocate for the rights and interest of migrant and refugee communities and promote multiculturalism in Victoria.

Quotes attributable to ECCV Chairperson, Eddie Micallef:

“With his outstanding leadership, experience, and commitment to multicultural Victoria as Premier of Victoria and beyond, Mr Bracks is an ideal community leader to be ECCV’s next patron, as ECCV prepares to celebrate our milestone 50th anniversary next year.

“We thank Mr Bracks for accepting our invitation and and look forward to working together to strengthen inclusion and social cohesion in Victoria.”

Quotes attributable to ECCV Patron, The Hon Steve Bracks:

“I am honoured to accept the role of patron for ECCV, an organisation with a long and proud history of supporting migrant and refugee communities and promoting diversity and inclusion in our state.

“I look forward to working closely with ECCV to support our multicultural communities and create a more equitable future for all Victorians.”

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