Department of Human Services

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Relationships – focus and actions

Relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and other Australians in an environment of trust are essential to our department and to delivering services that make a difference. We are uniquely positioned to achieve this through collaborating with the communities of South Australia to develop strategies, programs and services which will address the real time concerns of our vulnerable communities.

We want to achieve positive outcomes for all communities through a shared understanding of each other’s experiences and cultures, recognise and respect the cultural authority of our colleagues and community members and provide the highest quality of services which address their needs.

Relationships focus area

Social inclusion is key to the business of DHS; we are committed to achieving strong supportive relationships between all members of our community and within our department.

Action 1: Establish and maintain mutually beneficial relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander stakeholders and organisations

Number

Deliverables

Timeframe

Responsibility

1.1

Work closely with local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander stakeholders to co-design a ‘DHS Aboriginal Engagement Strategy’ for use across DHS aimed at:

  • embedding existing co-design principles across   the department
  • increasing engagement with Aboriginal and   Torres Strait Islander communities, staff and organisations when designing   and reviewing strategies and policies
  • increasing Aboriginal and Torres Strait   Islander voices in DHS continuous improvement processes through partnering   with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples with lived experience.

September 2022

ED, Strategy and Reform

1.2

Implement and annually review the ‘DHS Aboriginal Engagement Strategy’ with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander stakeholders, staff and organisations to measure key areas of focus outlined in 1.1.

August 2023

ED, Strategy and Reform

1.3

Consider participation in the JAWUN secondment program to connect skilled DHS individuals with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations.

June 2022, 2023

ED, People and Performance

Action 2: Promote reconciliation through our sphere of influence

Number

Deliverable

Timeframe

Responsibility

2.1

Develop, communicate and implement DHS-wide strategies that enables all staff and key service partners to participate in DHS reconciliation activities throughout the year.

March 2022, 2023

Chairperson, DHS Reconciliation Committee

2.2

Communicate our commitment to reconciliation publicly and share our initiatives through sector-wide communications, social media, and dedicated DHS Reconciliation webpage throughout the year.

April 2022, 2023

July, September, December 2022, 2023

ED, People and Performance

2.3

Collaborate with RAP and other like-minded organisations to develop ways to advance reconciliation.

August 2022, 2023

Chairperson, DHS Reconciliation Committee and

Reconciliation Coordinator

2.4

Explore opportunities to positively influence our external stakeholders to drive reconciliation outcomes through sector-wide communications, reconciliation activities and events.

May 2022, 2023

Chairperson, DHS Reconciliation Committee

2.5

Attend, collaborate and participate in the whole of SA Government Reconciliation Network.

December 2022, 2023

Chairperson, DHS Reconciliation Committee and Reconciliation Coordinator

2.6

Update DHSs Executive Leadership Statement of Reconciliation, and distribution of printed and framed copies throughout DHS offices.

March 2022

ED, Strategy and Reform

2.7

Encourage nominations for Chief Executive Awards to celebrate and promote staff who actively champion, promote and influence reconciliation (links with DHS Diversity and Inclusion Strategy).

September 2022, 2023

Lead: CE

Support: ELT

Action 3: Build relationships through celebrating National Reconciliation Week (NRW)

Number

Deliverables

Timeframe

Responsibility

3.1

Communicate and implement strategies for all DHS staff to support attendance and participation in internal and external NRW activities, ensuring proactive participation of:

  • DHS Reconciliation Committee members
  • members monitoring the DHS Diversity and   Inclusion Strategy
  • Divisional Reconciliation Champions
  • DHS Executive Leaders.

May 2022, 2023

Chairperson, DHS Reconciliation Committee

3.2

Circulate Reconciliation Australia’s NRW resources and reconciliation materials to our staff and procurement partners, ensuring promotion through our intranet site, emails and social media.

May 2022, 2023

ED, People and Performance

3.3

Each division of DHS to organise and promote at least one internal NRW event each year and share information on DHS Reconciliation Website Page and social media platforms.

May 2022, 2023

Lead: Executive Sponsor, DHS Reconciliation Committee

Support: ELT

3.4

Each DHS division to provide (in-kind / partnering) for at least one external NRW event with a community-based organisation.

May 2022, 2023

Lead: Executive Sponsor, DHS Reconciliation Committee

Support: ELT

3.5

Register all our NRW events on Reconciliation Australia’s NRW website.

May 2022, 2023

ED, People and Performance

3.6

Provide links to the whole-of-government National Reconciliation Week Calendar on the DHS intranet.

May 2022, 2023

ED, People and Performance

Action 4: Promote positive race relations through anti-racism strategies

Number

Deliverables

Timeframe

Responsibility

4.1

Conduct a review of HR policies and procedures to identify existing anti-racism provisions, and future needs by actively seeking input from the DHS Aboriginal Leadership Group into this review.

June 2022

ED, People and Performance

4.2

Develop and implement an Anti-racism Policy for our organisation, ensuring it is aligned with our Respectful Treatment at Work Policy.

July 2022

ED, People and Performance

4.3

Engage with DHS Aboriginal Leadership Group and key advisors to consult the development of the Anti-racism Policy (4.1) and its interface with the Respectful Treatment at Work Policy.

June 2022

ED, People and Performance

4.4

Communicate and ensure awareness and accessibility of the Anti-racism Policy (4.1) and the Respectful Treatment at Work Policy to all DHS staff and service users.

October 2022

ED, People and Performance

4.5

Provide ongoing education and learning opportunities for staff on the effects of racism and responding to racism in the workplace, including participation in ‘Responding to Racism in the Workplace’ Program established by Reconciliation SA and ActNow Theatre.

November 2022, 2023

ED, People and Performance

4.6

Ensure DHS senior leaders and managers participate in anti-racism training.

November 2022, 2023

ED, People and Performance

Action 5: Increase internal knowledge and awareness of RAP across divisions and regions

Number

Deliverables

Timeframe

Responsibility

5.1

Distribute DHS Annual RAP Report to all Divisions for tabling at their team meeting after the release of the Annual Report

December 2022, 2023

Chairperson, DHS Reconciliation Committee

5.2

Update the DHS Reconciliation webpage that:

  • promotes the DHS RAP and commitment to   reconciliation
  • shares progress on DHS RAP deliverables.

December 2022, 2023

ED, People and Performance

Action 6: Strengthen capacity of DHS leadership to progress reconciliation across DHS and with our partners

Number

Deliverables

Timeframe

Responsibility

6.1

Ensure that essential requirements for recruitment into leadership positions within DHS includes demonstrated experience in successfully working alongside Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities.

March 2022

Lead: Executive Sponsor, DHS Reconciliation Committee

Support: ELT

6.2

Appoint a DHS Reconciliation Coordinator, with primary responsibility to:

  • support the successful implementation of DHS RAP by driving actions and deliverables
  • facilitate the operations of the   Reconciliation Committee
  • facilitate divisional accountability of RAP deliverables
  • support the Reconciliation Committee, champions, and responsible officers.

May 2022

Lead: Reconciliation Sponsor

Support: ELT

6.3

Ensure all DHS Senior leaders and the Executive Leadership Team are supported to attend and participate in reconciliation events happening throughout the year to achieve regular ongoing engagement in DHS’s reconciliation journey

August 2022, 2023

CE

6.4

Executive Leadership Team to individually meet regularly and provide support to their division’s Reconciliation Committee Representative

March, June, September, December 2022, 2023, March, 2024

Lead: Executive Sponsor, DHS Reconciliation Committee

Support: ELT

Page last updated : 23 Sep 2022

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