May 23rd saw a stimulating forum held at Melbourne University.
The topic: Progress in the implementation of recommendations of the 2010 report – ‘In Our World – Australian Africans: A review of human rights and social inclusion issues’ by the Australian Human Rights Commission.
This report was the outcome of a three year consultation process in which African Australian communities around the country were given the opportunity to tell their settlement experiences, express key barriers preventing them from successfully establishing their life in Australia and steps taken to address their concerns. The prestigious panel of speakers evaluated the current situation in the light of this 2010 report. The speakers included: Associate Professor Andre Renzaho (School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Monash University), Rivkah Nissim (Principal Adviser, Race Discrimination Team –Australian Human Rights Commission), Tamar Hopkins (Principal Solicitor, Flemington Kensington Community Legal Centre), Jane Berry (Community Projects Solicitor, Footscray Community Legal Centre) and Abeselom Nega (CEO of iEmpower). The overall consensus was; Australian government agencies were supportive and making progress, yet recognised more needed to be done to support successful establishment of Australians from African descent.