In 2022, Victoria experienced one its most devastating flood disasters on record when a low-pressure system travelling eastward over Australia unleashed torrential rain and storms.

Resulting in the tragic loss of homes and life, the floods also had a particularly severe impact on Victoria’s multicultural communities, who were not prepared for a disaster of this scale.

Ethnic Communities’ Council of Victoria’s joint report with the Neighbourhood Collective Australia and Regional Victorians of Colour reveals the key issues multicultural communities faced during this devastating flood event.

The report found that multicultural communities, particularly those who are newly arrived and those on temporary visas, were at far greater risk of harm during the 2022 floods, had high levels of fear and anxiety, and gained information about the floods in very different ways compared to the mainstream community.

Based on interviews and focus groups with 31 multicultural community members living in flood-affected regions across Victoria, the report provides recommendations for planning, preparedness and response to future flood events.

Summary of Recommendations

Recommendation 1
Develop emergency management plans that reflect the diverse needs of multicultural communities.

Recommendation 2
Strengthen multicultural community engagement at local and statewide level.

Recommendation 3
Invest in training and support for multicultural community leaders and organisations.

Recommendation 4
Improve the cultural responsiveness of emergency agencies and services.

Recommendation 5
Increase workforce cultural diversity within emergency agencies and services.

Media Enquiries

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Phone: 0431 091 738

Ethnic Communities’ Council of Victoria
Neighbourhood Collective Australia
Regional Victorians of Colour

August 2023