The SBS Charter, contained in the SBS Act, sets out the principal function of SBS.
(1) The principal function of the SBS is to provide multilingual and multicultural radio, television and digital media services that inform, educate and entertain all Australians and, in doing so, reflect Australia's multicultural society.
(2) SBS, in performing its principal function, must:
(a) contribute to meeting the communications needs of Australia's multicultural society, including ethnic, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities; and
(b) increase awareness of the contribution of a diversity of cultures to the continuing development of Australian society; and
(c) promote understanding and acceptance of the cultural, linguistic and ethnic diversity of the Australian people; and
(d) contribute to the retention and continuing development of language and other cultural skills; and
(e) as far as practicable, inform, educate and entertain Australians in their preferred languages; and
(f) make use of Australia's diverse creative resources; and
(g) to the extent to which the function relates to radio and television services— contribute to the overall diversity of Australian television and radio services, particularly taking into account the contribution of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and the community broadcasting sector; and
(h) to the extent to which the function relates to radio and television services— contribute to extending the range of Australian television and radio services, and reflect the changing nature of Australian society, by presenting many points of view and using innovative forms of expression.