We will encourage understanding, appreciation and deep respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and heritage, and take action to be a preferred employer and business partner.
The key performance measures are:
- Expenditure on major Indigenous acquisitions
- Percentage of staff and volunteers who have completed cultural awareness training
- Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee satisfaction with progress.
2019–23 Corporate Plan, p 9
Expenditure on major Indigenous acquisitions
% of staff and volunteers who have completed cultural awareness training
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee satisfaction with progress
Expenditure on Indigenous acquisitions is compiled by the museum’s Finance department from the finance system records.
Cultural awareness training is recorded in the Learning Management System.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee satisfaction with progress is a rating determined by the Chairperson of the Committee, having regard to the museum’s Reconciliation Action Plan implementation report and the updates provided by the museum to the Committee throughout the year.
This year the museum acquired 34 Indigenous acquisitions valued at $235,830. These acquisitions comprised $188,535 in expenditure noted in the table above and $47,295 in donations. New acquisitions included several important works of art by Torres Strait Islander artist Alick Tipoti through the Cultural Gifts Program, as well as donations through the Australian National Maritime Museum Foundation.
All new staff and volunteers are required to complete a cultural awareness training course through the Learning Management System (LMS) as part of the induction process. The museum supplements this with a range of informal learning opportunities, such as promoting watching The Australian Dream and considering how truth-telling applies to the work we do through a survey taken after watching, participating in NAIDOC Week activities, and encouraging watching the Ocean Talk ‘Connected to Sea Country’.
The Chairperson of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee has reported 85% satisfaction with the museum’s progress with reconciliation. The museum is in the second year of its Reconciliation Action Plan and has reported to Council and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee on a quarterly basis regarding progress made under the plan. With another year to go, 68% of the deliverables have been completed and 22% are in progress.
Some of the highlights achieved under our Reconciliation Action Plan in 2019–20 include:
- strong engagement with Indigenous communities or organisations, particularly as part of Encounters 2020 but also in respect of acquisitions, exhibitions, museum programs, NAIDOC Week and attendance at Indigenous art fairs
- Kanalaritja: an unbroken string exhibition in the Eora Gallery, part of the ongoing strategy to move from a permanent gallery to a space with temporary and travelling exhibitions
- 10% of the Store’s sales were goods produced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists and suppliers
- the museum is a member of the Indigenous Art Code and is committed to ensuring that other institutions are aware of the benefits of membership
- engaging with an Indigenous organisation to ensure that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff have access to culturally appropriate support
- the museum used Supply Nation as part of its overall procurement practice and commitment to using best endeavours to apply the Commonwealth’s Indigenous Procurement Policy
- on 25 August 2019 – Australian South Sea Islanders National Recognition Day – the museum hosted a South Sea Islander flag-raising event to acknowledge the Australian South Sea Islander community, and local Aboriginal custodians gave a Welcome to Country and a healing smoking ceremony. This was a powerful demonstration of unity between two cultures.