The Ethnic Communities’ Council of Victoria has released its policy platform for the upcoming Victorian Election.
ECCV’s State Election Platform 2022 is calling on all parties to learn from the experiences and systemic gaps exposed by the pandemic and take action to ensure that our diverse communities can respond, rebuild and recover equitably.
The platform makes 55 recommendations and proposes actions across key priority areas – including health and wellbeing, aged care, disability, employment, and emergency management – to help build a stronger, more resilient and inclusive Victorian community.
At the heart of the Platform is a call for new co-designed Multicultural Strategy that takes a whole-of-government approach to engaging and supporting migrant and refugee communities.
“Victoria’s migrant and refugee communities were disproportionately affected by the health and economic impact of COVID-19, and we saw the impact of the systemic gaps that were exposed during that time,” said ECCV Chairperson, Eddie Micallef.
“We need to embed migrant and refugee voices in the design of policies and services and ensure they are not an afterthought. We need to support multicultural and ethno-specific organisations to be part of the co-design process and the coordination and delivery of services,” he said.
Key recommendations in the Platform include:
- Increasing engagement, support and collaboration with multicultural and ethno-specific organisations in the design, coordination and delivery of services.
- Recognising the value of the underfunded multicultural sector and building capacity for the long term through a centralised, responsive and equitable funding model, ending fragmented drip-funding.
- Recognising and developing the bicultural and bilingual workforce that has been key to the success of community-led pandemic responses in areas such as health literacy, food relief, and mental health support.
- Providing sustained funding to develop the Anti-Racism Strategy
- Building community resilience in emergency management, including ongoing support for the Multicultural Resilience Project led by VCOSS and ECCV
- Promoting healthy and positive ageing for older people by supporting multicultural and ethno-specific organisations to provide suitable aged care services to their communities, including capacity building for seniors clubs.
- Addressing barriers to employment through the development of a comprehensive multicultural employment plan for migrant and refugee communities.
Mr Micallef said multicultural and ethno-specific organisations have been at the forefront of providing outreach and information to support our diverse communities during the public health response to pandemic.
While the pandemic response led to unprecedented levels of collaboration and support for the underfunded multicultural sector, the Victorian Government should continue to support and build on these alliances and partnerships as part of a new multicultural strategy.
“This is about working with communities, building on their strengths, and factoring in the diversity and complexity of needs within our migrant and refugee communities.
“It’s about fostering meaningful engagement that will lead to more accessible, equitable and culturally responsive service that can help improve outcomes and reduce disparities long term,” he said.”
Media Inquiries: Victoria Kyriakopoulos, Director of Media & Engagement | M: 0431 091 738 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Read about our platform here