Ismaع - Listen: Appendices

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 National consultations on elimination prejudice against Arab and Muslim Australians

Appendices




Appendix 1: Consultations by State and Territory

State and location by area

Date

Consultation name
(as noted in endnotes)
Host
Participants
ACT
Canberra 2 June 2003 Canberra Islamic Centre, Canberra Canberra Islamic Centre (CIC) 13 Muslim men and women CIC members of various ages from diverse ethnic backgrounds including Turkish, Bosnian, Lebanese, Swiss, Pakistani, Indian, Iraqi and Indonesian.
Canberra 3 June 2003 Consultation hosted by ACT Human Rights and ACT Office of Multicultural Affairs, Canberra ACT Office of Multicultural Affairs & ACT Human Rights Office 8 community and government representatives from the Australian Federal Police (ACT Policing), DIMIA, Commonwealth Attorney-General's and one youth and one ethnic organisation.
Totals for ACT   Consultations = 2 Number of participants = 21
New South Wales
Auburn 5 April 2003 Muslim Women's National Network of Australia, Sydney Muslim Women's National Network of Australia 15 Muslim women members of various ages from all over Sydney and of diverse ethnic backgrounds including Turkish, Pakistani, Anglo-Celtic, Egyptian, Afghan, Bangladeshi and Lebanese.
Bankstown 7 April 2003 Youth Reference Group to the NSW Premier's Youth Partnership with Arabic Speaking Communities, Sydney NSW Premier's Departments' Youth Partnership with Arabic Speaking Communities Project 11 male and female Youth Reference Group members of Arabic speaking background and of diverse religious backgrounds from various areas of Sydney.
Manly 9 April 2003 NSW Police Ethnic Community Liaison Officers, Sydney NSW Police 20 NSW Police staff, including Ethnic Community Liaison Officers from across NSW and the NSW Ethnic Community Liaison Officer Coordinator.
Rockdale 11 April 2003 St. George Lebanese Joint Committee Women's Group, Sydney St. George Migrant Resource Centre, St George Lebanese Joint Committee 18 members of the St George Lebanese Joint Committee Women's group (attended also by the Community Development Worker of Rockdale City Council). Arabic interpreter: Ms Nada Khoder
Arncliffe 23 April 2003 Al Zahra Muslim Women's Association, Sydney Al Zahra Islamic Council 250 Muslim women members of the Al Zahra Muslim Women's Association of various ages and mostly of either Lebanese or Iraqi background.
Bankstown 29 April 2003 Arabic Workers' Network, Sydney Australian Arabic Communities Council 12 Arabic Workers' Network members from a range of community and government departments covering areas including health, disability, refugees and newly arrived migrants, children and young people.
Harris Park 4 June 2003 Maronite Youth Organisation at Our Lady of Lebanon Church, Sydney Our Lady of Lebanon Church 12 young men and women members of the Maronite Youth Organisation including 2 religious leaders from Our Lady of Lebanon Church.
Lakemba 7 June 2003 United Muslim Women's Association young women's group, Sydney United Muslim Women's Association 16 young Muslim women of mostly Arabic background.
Bankstown 10 June 2003 Australian Arabic Communities Council, Sydney Australian Arabic Communities Council (AACC) 31 members and non-members of the AACC including community and religious leaders, Arab community members, ethnic media representatives and service providers in both government and non-government organisations, including education.
Lakemba 10 June 2003 Islamic Council of NSW, Sydney Islamic Council of NSW 17 men and women of various member organisations including representatives from the Board of Imams, Muslim women and youth groups and Islamic media. Muslims of diverse backgrounds were represented including Arabic, Bosnian, Turkish, Malay, Indonesian and South African.
Condell Park 12 June 2003 Consultation with Lebanese Muslim children and young people organised by the Lebanese Muslim Association, Sydney Lebanese Muslim Association 9 participants, including 8 Lebanese Muslim children and young people aged 9-15 and one adult.
Auburn 21 June 2003 The Muslim Council of NSW, Sydney The Muslim Council of NSW (TMC) 20 mostly Muslim men and women, including members and non-members of TMC, of different ethnic backgrounds including Palestinian, Pakistani and Lebanese. The Federal Member of Parliament for Auburn also attended.
Lakemba 23 June 2003 United Muslim Women's Association, Sydney United Muslim Women's Association 41 Muslim women from diverse ethnic backgrounds including Pakistani, Afghan, Arab, Anglo-Celtic and Turkish.
Northern Sydney 26 June 2003 Consultation with Muslim Women in northern Sydney Non-government organisation 9 Muslim women of Indonesian and Egyptian background living in Northern Sydney.
Auburn 1 July 2003 Consultation with Afghan Elderly Men's Group at Auburn Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors (STARTTS), hosted by STARTTS NSW, Sydney Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors 11 members of the Afghan Elderly Men's Refugee Group. Dari and Pashtu interpreter: Ms Nooria Mehraby (also the STARTTS Bilingual Counsellor, group convenor and chair)
Erskineville 1 Aug 2003 Consultations with NSW Teachers, Anti-Racism Contact Officers and Community Information Officers, Sydney NSW Department of Education and Training 17 Community Information Officers from various regional and metropolitan areas of NSW.
Cringila 9 Aug 2003 Consultation hosted by Illawarra Ethnic Communities Council, Wollongong Illawarra Ethnic Communities Council 15 Arab and Muslim men and women community members as well as academics and representatives from community and government organisations, working in areas which include legal, the arts, health, youth and women.
Sydney (South West) 12 Aug 2003 Consultations with NSW primary school students (Years 5 and 6) at three Sydney public schools, Sydney NSW Department of Education and Training 11 Assyrian and Muslim Year 5 male and female primary school students of diverse ethnic backgrounds including Iraqi, Pakistani, Lebanese and Iranian.
Sydney (West) 13 Aug 2003 Consultations with NSW secondary students at three government schools, Sydney NSW Department of Education and Training 11 male Arab and Muslim Year 11 secondary students of diverse ethnic backgrounds including Lebanese, Pakistani, Turkish and Fijian.
Riverwood 14 Aug 2003 Consultations with NSW Teachers, Anti-Racism Contact Officers and Community Information Officers, Sydney NSW Department of Education and Training (DET) 9 participants including 7 public school teachers from primary and secondary schools across Sydney, including teachers of the Arabic language and culture, and 2 representatives of the Multicultural Programs Unit of DET.
Sydney (East) 15 Aug 2003 Consultations with NSW primary school students (Years 5 and 6) at three Sydney public schools, Sydney NSW Department of Education and Training 9 Muslim Year 6 male and female primary school students of diverse ethnic backgrounds including Turkish, Iraqi, Iranian, Pakistani, Lebanese, Egyptian, Bangladeshi and Malaysian.
Sydney (East) 18 Aug 2003 Consultations with NSW secondary school students at three government schools, Sydney NSW Department of Education and Training 14 female Assyrian and Muslim Year 8-11 secondary students of diverse ethnic backgrounds including Lebanese, Iraqi, Afghan, Bangladeshi, Egyptian, Pakistani, Turkish and Asian.
Riverwood 19 Aug 2003 Consultations with NSW Teachers, Anti-Racism Contact Officers and Community Information Officers, Sydney NSW Department of Education and Training 13 Anti-Racism Contact Officers and teachers from various primary and secondary schools across Sydney.
Sydney (West) 20 Aug 2003 Consultations with NSW secondary school students at three government schools, Sydney NSW Department of Education and Training 16 mostly Arab and Muslim Year 7-11 male and female secondary students of diverse religious backgrounds including Muslim, Baha'i and Coptic and diverse ethnic backgrounds including Lebanese, Anglo-Celtic, Indian, Turkish, Afghan, Jordanian Palestinian, Cyprian, Bosnian, Iranian, Egyptian and Bangladeshi.
Sydney (Inner West) 21 Aug 2003 Consultations with NSW primary school students (Years 5 and 6) at three Sydney public schools, Sydney NSW Department of Education and Training 11 Muslim Year 5 and 6 male and female primary school students of diverse ethnic backgrounds including Turkish, Lebanese and Indonesian.
Campsie 27 Aug 2003 Consultation with Migrant Resource Centre staff hosted by Canterbury-Bankstown MRC, Sydney Canterbury-Bankstown Migrant Resource Centre (MRC) 11 members and staff of several Sydney Migrant Resource Centres.
Bankstown 4 Sept 2003 Lebanese Community Council, Sydney Lebanese Community Council (LCC) 5 members and staff of the LCC of diverse religious backgrounds.
Lakemba 10 Sept 2003 Forum on Australia's Islamic Relations, Sydney V Forum on Australia's Islamic Relations (FAIR) 3 Muslim board members of diverse ethnic backgrounds.
Campsie 8 Aug 2003 Consultation with Arab women's group hosted by The Women's Centre, Sydney The Women's Centre 8 Arab Muslim and Christian women.
Sydney University 9 Oct 2003 Consultation with Sydney University Students Sydney University Arab Students Association 12 student members of Sydney University Arab Students Association and Sydney University Muslim Students Association of diverse ethnic backgrounds including Lebanese, Palestinian, Turkish and Italian.
Lakemba 15 Oct 2003 Tripoli and Mena Association Seniors' Group, Sydney Tripoli and Mena Association (TMA) 82 men and women members of TMA Seniors' Group from various areas of Lebanon.
Prestons 21 Oct 2003 Consultation with Muslim women hosted by Auburn Gallipoli Mosque and Affinity Intercultural Foundation, Sule College, Sydney Auburn Gallipoli Mosque and Affinity Intercultural Foundation 16 Muslim women most of whom are teachers at Sule College. The women were from diverse ethnic backgrounds, including Turkish, Pakistani, Lebanese and Anglo-Celtic.
Sydney 24 Nov 2003 Consultation with NSW Academics hosted by HREOC, Sydney HREOC 5 academics from the University of NSW, University of Western Sydney and Sydney University.
Totals for NSW   Consultations = 33 Number of participants = 760
Northern Territory
Alice Springs 5 June 2003 Consultation hosted by Multicultural Community Services of Central Australia, Alice Springs Multicultural Community Services of Central Australia 28 participants including Arab and Muslim community members as young as 9 from diverse religious and ethnic backgrounds including Afghan, Anglo-Celtic, Ghanaian, Egyptian and Iraqi, and representatives from various community, religious and government organisations.
Totals for NT   Consultations = 1 Number of participants = 28
Queensland
Milton 16 June 2003 Consultation hosted by the Anti-Discrimination Commission of Queensland (ADCQ) and Multicultural Affairs Queensland (MAQ), Brisbane Anti-Discrimination Commission Queensland and Multicultural Affairs Queensland, Department of Premier and Cabinet 16 participants including Arab and Muslim community members of diverse religious and ethnic backgrounds including Arab, Afghan, Egyptian, Palestinian and Pakistani; representatives from various community, religious and government organisations such as leaders of Muslim and Christian faiths, Queensland Police representatives, ADCQ, Department of Premier and Cabinet and service providers for youth, women, children and refugees.
Eight Mile Plains 17 June 2003 Islamic Women's Association of Queensland Senior Women's Respite Group, Brisbane Islamic Women's Association of Qld (IWAQ) 83 Muslim women members of IWAQ's Senior Women's Respite Group. Bosnian interpreter: Ms Hasnija Junuzuvic
Sunnybank Hills 17 June 2003 Consultation with young Muslim women, Brisbane Young Muslim community member 6 young Muslim women aged 18-30 of diverse ethnic backgrounds including Anglo-Celtic, Pakistani, Indian, Palestinian and Lebanese.
Brisbane 18 June 2003 Consultation with Queensland Anti-Racism Community Reference Group, Brisbane Multicultural Affairs Queensland (MAQ), Department of Premier and Cabinet 13 Members of the Qld Anti-Racism Community Reference Group to the Department of Premier and Cabinet. The group consists of representatives of various community, religious and government organisations, including Brisbane City Council, Queensland Police Service, Ethnic Communities Council of Qld, Education QLD, Local Government Association of Qld, MAQ and ADCQ.
Brisbane 18 June 2003 Consultation with young Arab men, Brisbane Young Arab community member 8 young Arab men aged 16-26 of diverse religious backgrounds.
Totals for QLD   Consultations = 5 Number of participants = 126
South Australia
Adelaide 16 July 2003 Consultation hosted by the SA Equal Opportunity Commission, Adelaide SA Equal Opportunity Commission (EOC of SA) 22 mostly Arab and Muslim community members from diverse religious and ethnic backgrounds including Persian, Iraqi, Arabic, Bosnia and Herzegovina as well as representatives of various government and non-government organisations including SA Police (SAPOL), STTARS, EOC of SA, DIMIA, and local MRCs.
Adelaide 17 July 2003 Women only consultation hosted by the SA Equal Opportunity Commission, Adelaide SA Equal Opportunity Commission 22 women community members of diverse religious backgrounds including Muslim, Christian and Jewish faiths, and of diverse ethnic backgrounds including Iranian, Pakistani, Lebanese, Afghan, Anglo-Celtic, Turkish, Egyptian and German. Participants also included representatives of the Muslim Women's Association of SA., university and high school students, academics, DIMIA, Multicultural SA, and EOC of SA.
Hindmarsh 17 July 2003 Consultation hosted by the Multicultural Education Committee and the SA Equal Opportunity Commission, Adelaide (EOC of SA) SA Multicultural Education Committee (MEC) and EOC of SA 38 members of MEC as well as teachers, students, principals, administration officers and directors of various child care services and centres, primary and secondary public schools, private and religious schools and university representatives from diverse ethnic and religious backgrounds, including Muslim, Christian and Jewish from regional and metropolitan areas of South Australia.
Adelaide 17 July 2003 Consultation with young Arab Muslims and Christians and non-Arab Muslims, Adelaide Mr Houssam Abiad - Young Arab community member 8 young Arab Muslims and Christians and non-Arab Muslim men and women aged 20-29 of diverse ethnic backgrounds including Lebanese, Anglo-Celtic and Fijian Indian.
Totals for SA   Consultations = 4 Number of participants = 90
Tasmania
Hobart 14 June 2003 Consultation hosted by Tasmanian Anti-Discrimination Commission, Hobart Tasmanian Anti-Discrimination Commission (ADC Tasmania) 28 participants including Arab and Muslim community members from diverse ethnic and religious backgrounds such as Lebanese, Palestinian, Africa and Egypt, including students as young as 12. Also attending were representatives of community, religious and government and non-government organisations including ADC Tasmania, DIMIA, Multicultural Tasmania, refugee groups and the local MRC.
Totals for TAS   Consultations = 1 Number of participants = 28
Victoria
Melbourne 30 April 2003 Preliminary consultation to launch Isma in Victoria hosted by Victorian Equal Opportunity Commission, Melbourne Equal Opportunity Commission of Victoria (EOCV) 24 participants including Arab and Muslim community members of diverse religious and ethnic backgrounds and representatives from various community, religious, government and nongovernment organisations including EOCV, Victoria Police, DIMIA, MRC, Victorian Multicultural Commission (VMC), Victorian Office of Multicultural Affairs (VOMA) and service providers for children, youth, women and refugee groups.
West Melbourne 26 May 2003 Islamic Council of Victoria, Melbourne Islamic Council of Victoria (ICV) 9 Muslim men and women members of the ICV of diverse ethnic backgrounds, including community members, a teacher, Imam and prison chaplain.
Fitzroy 26 May 2003 Consultation with refugee women hosted by the Ecumenical Migration Centre, Melbourne Ecumenical Migration Centre (EMC), Brotherhood of St. Laurence 10 women including refugees from the Horn of Africa, i.e. Somalia, Sudan and Eritrea and one woman from East Timor. All were members of the 'Given the Chance' Program. 2 EMC staff members also attended.
Mill Park 26 May 2003 Consultation with Victoria Police Multicultural Liaison Officers, Melbourne Victoria Police 7 Victoria Police staff including Multicultural Liaison Officers from Region 3 and the Divisional Superintendent.
Melbourne 27 May 2003 Consultation with Victoria Police Multicultural Liaison Officers, Melbourne Victoria Police 11 Victoria Police staff including Multicultural Liaison Officers from Regions 1, 3, 4 and 5 as well as the Multicultural Affairs Advisor.
Melbourne 27 May 2003 Muslim lawyers group, Melbourne Muslim lawyers' group 7 men and women members of the group of diverse ethnic backgrounds including Pakistani, Lebanese, and Egyptian, all Muslim lawyers practising in Melbourne.
Brunswick 28 May 2003 Australian Arabic Council, Melbourne Australian Arabic Council (AAC) 4 members of the AAC of diverse ethnic and religious backgrounds including Assyrian, Lebanese and Anglo-Celtic.
Footscray 28 May 2003 Victorian Department of Human Services 7 members of the Islamic Girls and Women's Group from diverse ethnic backgrounds including Somali, Sudanese, Egyptian, Lebanese and Pakistani.
Monash University 28 May 2003 Consultation with members of the Indonesian Muslim Community of Victoria, Monash University Indonesian Muslim Community of Victoria (IMCV) 8 Indonesian Muslim men and women members of IMCV including international and local students and one member of Perwira Indonesian Society of Victoria.
Shepparton 29 May 2003 Consultation with students from Goulburn-Ovens TAFE at Shepparton (Victoria) hosted by Shepparton Ethnic Communities Council, Shepparton Shepparton Ethnic Communities Council & Goulburn-Ovens TAFE 84 participants including students of various ages mostly comprising male Iraqi refugees and male and female Albanian Muslims. Also attending were Turkish, Ghanaian and Italian students and TAFE teachers. Albanian interpreter: Ms Bianca Bido
Shepparton 30 May 2003 Consultation with Iraqi refugee women hosted by the Shepparton Ethnic Communities Council at the Goulburn-Oven's TAFE, Shepparton Shepparton Ethnic Communities Council & Goulburn-Ovens TAFE 23 Muslim Iraqi refugee women students of various ages. Teachers also attended.
Rural Victoria 30 May 2003 Consultation with Iraqi Refugees in rural Victoria Local Iraqi community member 12 Muslim Iraqi refugee men.
Coburg 12 Nov 2003 Horn of Africa Senior Women's Program, Melbourne Islamic Women's Welfare Council of Victoria (IWWCV) and Australian Lebanese Welfare (ALW) 13 Arab Muslim women of various ages from the Moreland City Council area.
Preston 13 Nov 2003 Consultation with staff of the Northern Migrant Resource Centre Inc.(NMRC), Melbourne Northern Migrant Resource Centre (formerly known as the North East MRC) 3 staff members of the MRC.
Kensington 13 Nov 2003 Consultation with Arab Muslim Women facilitated by Islamic Women's Welfare Council of Victoria and Australian Lebanese Welfare Inc., Melbourne IWWCV and Horn of Africa Senior Women's Program Inc. 11 members of the Program all of who were Eritrean Muslim refugee women over the age of 60. Interpreter: Ms Amna Malkin
Endeavour Hills 13 Nov 2003 Antiochian Community Support Association, Melbourne Antiochian Community Support Association organised by Ms Amal El-Khoury 9 Arab men and women members of the Association all of the Antiochian Orthodox faith.
Burwood Campus 14 Nov 2003 Consultation with Victorian Academics, Melbourne 2 academics from Deakin University.
Dandenong 14 Nov 2003 Interfaith Network of the City of Greater Dandenong, Dandenong Interfaith Network of the City of Greater Dandenong organised by Ms Margaret Mooney 6 participants, 4 of whom are members of the Interfaith Network, one representative of the Muslim Women's Association and one member of the Ethnic Communities Council of the South East. Faith communities represented were Islamic, Sikh, Uniting Church and Hindu.
Melbourne 15 Nov 2003 Consultation with Arab community members, Melbourne Arab community member 3 Arab community members.
Thornbury 17 Nov 2003 Consultation with Arab young people hosted by Australian Lebanese Welfare Inc., Melbourne Australian Lebanese Welfare Inc. 9 young Arab community members of Christian background aged 20-26 from various areas of Melbourne.
Totals for VIC   Consultations = 20 Number of participants = 262
Western Australia
North Perth 30 June 2003 Women only consultation hosted by the Office for Women’s Policy, WA Department for Community Development, Perth WA Office for Women’sPolicy, Department for Community Development, in collaboration with WA of Multicultural Interests, ECC Women’s Sub-Committee, Al-Hidayah Islamic School, Somali Community, Dar Al Shifah, Muslim Women’s Support Centre and Australian Islamic College 81 Muslim women of all ages and of diverse ethnic backgrounds including Iranian, Arab, Pakistani and Somali.Arabic and Farsi interpreters from the Translating and Interpreting Service assisted.
South Perth 30 June 2003 Consultation with Sikh community members, Perth Sikh community consultation organised by Mr Jasmit Singh, Sikh community member 9 male and female Sikh community members.
South Perth 1 July 2003 Consultation hosted by the WA Office of Multicultural Interests, Perth WA Office of Multicultural Interests 21 participants including Arab and Muslim community members Interests of diverse religious and ethnic backgrounds and representatives from various communities, religious, government and non-government organisations.
Totals for WA   Consultations = 3 Number of participants = 111

Appendix 2: Facts on Arab Australians[1]

We have interpreted the term 'Arab Australian' broadly to include people bound by a common language (Arabic) and a common cultural heritage which can be traced back to the Arabic-speaking countries of the Middle East and North Africa. To sketch a demographic outline of this group we will use a combination of statistics relating to country of birth, ancestry and language.

Numbers

According to the 2001 Census:

  • 209,372 Australians speak Arabic
  • 162,283 Australians were born in the 22 Arab League nations (0.8% of Australia's population)
  • 120,000 Australians have a parent born in an Arab country
  • There were 248,807 responses indicating 'Arab' ancestry.[2]

Current residence

Arabic speaking Australians have settled predominantly in New South Wales and Victoria with smaller populations in Western Australia, Queensland and South Australia. A very small proportion lives in the Northern Territory, Tasmania or the ACT.

Countries of birth

  • The most common origin is Lebanese followed by Egyptian, Iraqi and Syrian.
  • There are 71,349 Lebanese born Australians; a further 89,021 had a Lebanese born parent.
  • There are 33,432 Egyptian born Australians; a further 10,296 had an Egyptian born parent.
  • There are 24,832 Iraqi-born and 6,710 Syrian-born Australians.

Religion

Despite the widespread misconception that all Arabs in Australia are Muslim, a large proportion of Australia's Arabic community are Christian. For example, 55% of Lebanese-born Australians and 84% of Egyptian-born Australians are Christian.

Table 1: Proportion of select ethnic communities in Australia who are Muslim, 2001
Country of birth
Proportion who are Muslim in Australia
Proportion who are Muslim in country of origin
Muslim in Australia Lebanon 41% 70%
Egypt 9% 94%
Iraq 31% 97%
Syria 34% 90%
Sudan 12% 70%
Somalia 97% 100%*
Jordan 40% 94%

Source: ABS, 2001 Census, unpublished data and CIA World Fact Book, 2002.

Note: There are no precise figures on the proportion of Muslims in Somalia although most sources report that almost all Somalis are Muslim with a tiny Christian minority.

Settlement history

Lebanese, Egyptian and Syrian communities are more established than groups such as the Iraqis and other Middle Eastern and North African groups such as the Sudanese and Somalis whose migration gathered pace during the 1990s.

Table 2: Year of arrival in Australia for select birthplace groups, 2001
Country of Birth
Pre-1986
1986-1995
1996-2000
2001
Lebanon 61% 24% 8% 1%
Egypt 69% 20% 6% 1%
Iraq 15% 33% 43% 3%
Syria 46% 34% 13% 2%
Other Middle East 30% 35% 25% 5%
Other North Africa 35% 23% 31% 6%

Source: ABS, 2001 Census, unpublished data.

Note: Numbers do not add to 100% because year of arrival was not stated in some cases. 'Other Middle East' includes Bahrain, Jordan, Kuwait, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Yemen. 'Other North Africa' includes Algeria, Libya, Morocco, Sudan, Tunisia, Mauritania, Djibouti and Western Sahara.

Citizenship

It is important to recognise that the majority (85%) of Australians born in Arab countries have become Australian citizens. The citizenship take-up rate for overseas-born Arab Australians varies according to birthplace and is highest for longer established groups.

Table 3: Australian citizenship rates for select birthplace groups, 2001
Country of birth
% of ethnic group who are Australian citizens
Egypt
91.6 %
Lebanon
91.3 %
Syria
86.2%
Somalia
70.1%
Iraq
68.1%
Other Middle East
75.9%
Other N Africa
70.2%
All Overseas-born people
74.0%

Source: ABS, 2001 Census, Unpublished data and ABS, Year Book Australia, 2003.

Note: Non-citizens include those who are not eligible for citizenship because they have not yet met the two year residency requirement.

Age and Sex

  • Overseas-born Arab Australians are more likely to be of working age (25-64 years of age) than other Australians.
  • Overseas-born Arab Australians are more likely to be male (53%) compared to the general Australian population (which is 49% male).
  • Australians with a parent born in an Arab country are a youthful group: over 75% were 24 years or under with a further 14% aged 25-34 years.

Education

Australians born in Arab nations have very similar levels of education compared to all Australians.

  • Around the same proportion (13%) have a bachelor degree or higher qualification.
  • Fewer Arab Australians (15%) have a diploma or certificate compared with all Australians (22%).
  • A higher proportion of Arab Australians (8%) did not go to school compared with all Australians (1%).

Occupation

Overseas-born Arab Australians work in the same kinds of occupations as other Australians. They are only slightly less likely than other Australians to be employed as managers, administrators or professionals and slightly more likely to be employed as tradespeople, production and transport workers and labourers.

Employment status

Labour force participation of Australians born in Arab countries varies according to their country of birth. Unemployment among some birthplace groups is very high, particularly among those with high proportions of refugees. For example, 4 times as many Iraqi-born Australians are unemployed compared with Egyptian-born Australians.

Income

  • 31% of Arab Australians make less then $200 per week income compared with 27% of all Australians.
  • 7% of Arab Australians have an income of more than $1,000 per week compared with 11% of all Australians.

Appendix 3: Facts on Australian Muslims[3]

Numbers

According to the 2001 Census, there were 281,578 Australian Muslims represent-ing around 1.5% of the total Australian population. [4]

Population growth

  • Since 1996 census, the Australian Muslim population has grown by around 80,000: 40% of this growth has come from natural births and 60% of the growth has come from migration.
  • There has been a significant increase in the number of Australian Muslims over the last decade - the population almost doubled between 1991 and 2001 and has grown 157% since 1986.

Current Residence

  • The majority of Australian Muslims live in either New South Wales (50%) or Victoria (33%) with smaller populations in Western Australia (7%), Queensland (5%), South Australia (3%) and the ACT (1%).
  • Australian Muslims are concentrated in capital cities. Sydney and Melbourne are the two major cities of residence: 48% live in Sydney, 31% live in Melbourne. A further 6% live in Perth, 4% in Brisbane and 2% in Adelaide.

Countries of birth

Over one-third of Australian Muslims (36%) were born in Australia. A further 28% were born in the Middle East or North Africa, 16% were born in Asia, 9% were born in Europe, 4% were born in Africa (excluding North Africa) and 3% were born in Oceania (excluding Australia).

Ancestry

  • Of the 102,566 Australian-born Muslims:
    • Around 30% claim Lebanese ancestry
    • Around 18% claim Turkish ancestry
    • Around 3% claim broadly defined ‘Arab’ ancestry

Languages

Most Australian Muslims (87%) speak English in addition to another language such as Arabic, Turkish, Persian (Farsi), Bosnian, Indonesian, Bengali, Malay, Dari, Albanian, Hindi, Kurdish, and Pashto. 11% of Australian Muslims speak only English.

Age and Sex

  • Australian Muslims are a relatively young population: almost 50% are aged 24 and under (compared to 35% of non-Muslim Australians).
  • There are also slightly more Muslim men than women. 53% of Australian Muslims are male and 47% are female (compared with 49% male and 51% female for the Australian population as a whole).

Education

  • Given that Australian Muslims are a youthful population, there are proportionately more Muslims aged 15 years and over who are still at school compared with non-Muslims.
  • Overseas-born Muslims are more likely to have higher educational qualifications than Australian-born Muslims: 13% of overseas-born Muslim women and 18% of overseas-born Muslim men hold a bachelor degree or higher.
  • Australian Muslims aged over 15 years who are employed are very well educated: almost 22% of Australian Muslims who are employed hold a bachelor degree or higher.

Occupation

  • Australian Muslims are less likely than all Australians to be employed as managers, administrators or professionals. According to the 2001 Census, 20% of employed Muslim Australians were managers, administrators or professionals compared with 27% of all Australians.
  • Muslim men are more likely to be employed as production and transport workers (19%) or labourers (14%) compared with other Australian men (13% of whom are production or transport workers and 10% are labourers).
  • Muslim women are more likely to be employed as elementary clerical sales and service workers (18%) or labourers (12%) than other Australian women (14% of whom are elementary clerical sales and service workers and 7% are labourers).

Employment status

Labour force participation of Australian-born Muslims varies according to their birthplace. Australian-born Muslims are more likely than their overseas born counterparts to be in the labour force and less likely to be unemployed.

Income

  • Australian Muslims are financially disadvantaged compared to the Australian average.
  • According to the 2001 Census, 43% of Australian Muslims make less than $200 per week income compared with 27% of all Australians. 5% of Australian Muslims have income of more than $1,000 per week compared with 11% of all Australians.

1. The information in this appendix is based on unpublished data from the 2001 Census of Australia provided through the Australian Bureau of Statistics consultancy service.
2. 248,807 responses do not correspond to the number of people who claim Arab ancestry as people can indicate more than one ancestry in the census. The Australian Bureau of Statistics definition of ‘Arab’ includes people whose ancestry is: Algerian, Egyptian, Iraqi, Jordanian, Kuwaiti, Lebanese, Libyan, Moroccan, Palestinian, Saudi Arabian, Syrian, Tunisian, Baggara, Bedouin or Yemeni.
3. The information in this appendix is based on unpublished data from the 2001 Census of Australia provided through the Australian Bureau of Statistics consultancy service.
4. The number of Muslims is believed to be an under-estimate as 15% of Australians did not report their religion in the 2001 census, some of whom are presumed, statistically, to be Muslims.

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Last updated 16 June 2004.

 

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