21 April 2020
CMY endorses open letter urging Victorian Government to meet the needs of culturally diverse communities
The Centre for Multicultural Youth (CMY) is among 30 multicultural organisations across Victoria to sign an open letter to Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews and the Crisis Council of Cabinet this week, urging the government to ensure the needs of culturally diverse communities are at the forefront of the COVID-19 response.
The open letter from the Victorian Multicultural CEO Network outlines seven key recommendations:
1. Deem SBS as an official emergency broadcaster and other ethnic media as essential services.
2. Establish a CALD Taskforce in Victoria to support community planning and service implementation as part of the State’s response and recovery from COVID-19.
3. Provide funding certainty for all ethno-specific and multicultural organisations to ensure resources remain in place to support CALD communities through the pandemic.
4. Ensure consistency across all government departments with regards to funding flexibility in current contracts.
5. Multicultural events and festivals funding to be paid out for organisations that have expended money in preparing for events which were cancelled as a result of COVID-19.
6. Financial packages to better support vulnerable groups within CALD communities, including women and children, young people, seniors, people with disability, new and emerging communities and those without welfare rights.
7. Prioritise addressing the threats to social cohesion as a result of a rise in racism.
In signing the open letter on behalf of CMY, CEO Carmel Guerra said:
“Many young Victorians from refugee and migrant backgrounds experience socio-economic disadvantage alongside other factors that place them at risk of digital exclusion.”
“In the current health emergency of COVID-19, as essential services such as education and health shift online, this vulnerability is exacerbated and must be addressed immediately.”