Tuning in to young multicultural Victoria

Last week CMY held space for an important dialogue about cultural diversity in Victoria, at our first statewide forum of the year, Beyond Mainstream: Tuning in to Young Multicultural Victoria. The forum featured guest speakers, a youth panel and an interactive workshop.

Gerry Goswell, Director of Equality and Youth Branch, Department of Premier and Cabinet shared her experience growing up as a second-generation migrant in Australia and highlighted the importance of involving young people to inform policies.

CMY’s Policy Officer, Edmee Kenny then followed with some key findings from CMY’s newly released report, A Young and Multicultural Victoria: The 2016 Census. This report has an emphasis on young people from refugee and migrant backgrounds, and aims to provide data specific to this group of young Victorians to inform good decision-making. Edmee specifically highlighted that 48% of young people are born overseas or have at least one parent born overseas, yet those figures are not always reflected in workplaces or communities. Read the data snapshot

The MC for the event, Mehak Sheikh then invited four CMY Shout Out speakers, Steve Vung Sian Muan, Sundus Ibrahim, Komal Grewal and Bayu Pratama to the youth panel, where they shared their lived experiences of arriving in Australia, the barriers they faced when approaching support services, and also discussed what inclusion means to them. 

We also heard from Jennifer Tobin, Diversity Manager at CoHealth, who presented strategies on diversity and inclusion and how to embed inclusive practices into policy and service delivery, through five main principles of human rights, intersectionality, cultural safety, cultural humility and self-determination. These principles connect broadly to a diverse workforce and inclusive workplace culture, culturally safe and accessible services, community, collaboration and partnerships, inclusive leadership and advocating for broader change.

The final segment of the forum featured an interactive workshop, during which the audience used the information gained and CMY’s Inclusive Organisations Good Practice Guide to critically examine how their organisations could implement policies that would create an environment that was welcoming and inclusive for young people from migrant and refugee backgrounds. 

You can find the report, A Young and Multicultural Victoria: The 2016 Census here and CMY’s Inclusive Organisations Good Practice Guide here