Promoting Diversity in Local Government
What is Promoting Diversity in Local Government?Communities in NSW are made up of diverse groups including Aboriginal people, people from a culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) background, people with a disability, women and young people.
Promoting diversity in local government is about recognising the needs, values and contribution that these diverse groups can make to local government and encouraging their participation at all levels.
Promoting diversity in leadership and decision-making roles, including elected representatives and senior staff, is particularly important.
By promoting diversity councils can ensure better representation, a more highly skilled workforce and better decision-making to create a stronger and more sustainable local government system and better outcomes for local communities.
Better RepresentationIt is important that local communities contribute to local decisions.
By actively encouraging diversity, in both elected representation and in the workforce, councils can better ensure that all groups within the community, including minority groups, can contribute to local decisions.
Promoting diversity will ensure that councils and their staff better reflect the local community they represent and provide services appropriate to their local community.
Better SkillsIt is important that local government address skill shortages.
By undertaking recruitment and workplace practices that promote diversity and accommodate under-represented groups, the sector will have the opportunity to tap into a wider pool of potential job applicants to build a skilled workforce.
Promoting diversity will help councils find the right people in the right places with the right skills to do the right jobs.
Better Decision-makingIt is important that local government makes the best decisions possible.
By having people of different backgrounds, gender, ages and skill sets involved in local government, councils have access to a richer pool of ideas and perspectives about how to carry out functions and services. This can lead to innovative ways of doing business.
Promoting diversity will ensure that councils make the best decisions about their strategic direction and their community’s long term goals.
The project aims to address, in a strategic and coordinated way, the issue of the under-representation in local government in leadership positions of particular groups of people, both as elected representatives and among professional and senior council staff.
To date the project has involved consultation, research, the development of priority action plans, the implementation of a number of actions for women and the development of this website.
The website contains:
- general information for councils about promoting diversity and why it is important.
- specific information for particular diversity groups, particular roles and different levels within local government in recognition of the fact that issues, needs and strategies vary depending on the circumstances. This includes links to information to assist members of different groups access services available that relate to securing and retaining employment in local government.
- information for members of the public in relation to Year of Women in Local Government events that were organised by councils in 2010.
Councils and members of different groups are encouraged to find the information they need to suit their particular circumstances.
Other relevant information and links will be added over time.