Summary publication

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FACT SHEET

Racism. It Stops With Me Community Service Announcements 2017


On 5 October 2017, the Australian Human Rights Commission launched two Community Service Announcements (CSAs) and a social media campaign to raise awareness of everyday racism and bystander action.

The Commission expects these CSAs will help people identify racism and feel confident to act appropriately and safely when they witness or experience it.

The scenarios depicted in the Commission’s 2017 CSAs highlight casual or everyday racism in a work environment and in the provision of goods and services. The people who experience racism in our CSAs are an Aboriginal man and a woman with an African background.

Independent research has found that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and people with an African background frequently experience racism at work or while using public services such as transport. The Commission’s own data supports those findings.

Who experiences racism in Australia?

  • In 2015-16, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people accounted for 54% of complaints received by the Commission under the Racial Discrimination Act. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Indigenous Australians account for approximately 3% of the Australian population.
  • Reconciliation Australia’s 2016 ‘Barometer’ survey found 37% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people experienced racial abuse in the previous six months.
  • The Scanlon Foundation’s Australians Today survey recorded 59% of Indigenous respondents had experienced racial discrimination in the previous 12 months.
  • The Scanlon Foundation survey also found 54% of respondents with an African background had experienced discrimination in the past year, rising to 77% of South Sudanese respondents experiencing discrimination during that period.


Racism at work

The Commission’s complaint statistics for the most recent reporting period (July 2015 – June 2016) show:

  • 21% of complaints under the Racial Discrimination Act were received in relation to employment (107 complaints)

The Scanlon Foundation’s Australians Today survey found:

  • 22% of respondents with an African background (excluding South Sudan) experienced discrimination at work, and 61% of respondents with a South Sudanese background experienced discrimination in this context.

Racism in the provision of goods and services

The Commission’s complaint statistics for the most recent reporting period (July 2015 – June 2016) show:

  • 18% of complaints under the Racial Discrimination Act were received in relation to the provision of goods and services (91 complaints)

Reconciliation Australia’s 2016 ‘Barometer’ survey found:

  • 32% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander respondents experienced racial discrimination from “local shop owners and/or staff”, compared to 8% of respondents from the general community.

More information:

Visit the Racism. It Stops With Me website.


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