It is unlawful to discriminate against an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person because of their race, colour, descent or ethnic origin.
Racial discrimination happens when a person is treated less favourably, or not given the same opportunities as others in a similar situation, because of his or her Aboriginality or Torres Strait Islander background.
Employers can also be liable for the discriminatory acts of their employees. This is called ‘vicarious liability’.
Organisations can support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the workplace.
For example, they can create ‘identified positions’ that aim to employ Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in particular roles. This will not be considered discrimination if it is done solely to secure the advancement of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in a situation where they may otherwise be disadvantaged.
Organisations can also create Reconciliation Action Plans. A Reconciliation Action Plan is a practical plan to develop relationships, show respect and increase opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
- Good Practice, Good Business: What is racial discrimination?
- Discrimination: Know your rights – Information for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
- Targeted recruitment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people: A guideline for employers
- Reconciliation Action Plan Online Hub
- Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission; Cultural diversity in the workplace – a guide for employers working with Indigenous employees