No amount of spin should be capable of disorientating hard facts sufficiently to obfuscate that reality.
I pay my respects to their elders past and present. This is my first opportunity to speak publicly in Queensland, and I must say as a Victorian, I am always astonished at the breadth and diversity of this state, the richness of its beauty but also the challenges of its proximity to the more tropical rigours of climate fickleness!
I am sorry to see that yet again parts of your beautiful state have been impacted by natural elements, as floods ravage communities in the south. One of the unexpected realisations in taking on the role of national Race Discrimination Commissioner has in fact been the diversity of Racism in australia makes up Australia.
This diversity is of landscape as much as climate, of distance as much as density and of ways of life as well as hardship in life. It is a sunburnt country in part and a snow capped island in others.
We have the variable terrains, and the variable challenges that come with that, as numerous other countries have in conglomerate.
And so this makes it all the more astonishing that we, mainly, comfortably and easily define ourselves as Australians. Australia Day this year will be remembered for many different reasons. Sadly it may be remembered for the images of the protests associated with the Tent Embassy that flicked around the world, depicting a most un-Australian image of a head of country being bundled into a car.
It will be remembered because yet again the actions of a few people are used to attack our First Nations people. It will be remembered for the debate about whether we should have flags flying from cars — is this triumphalism, is it patriotic, is it just popular?
The diversity of who we are in all of our aspects as a country came together around these events. The views may have differed, but the interest, the connection, and the extent of the dialogue demonstrated that we are keenly interested in the Australia that is made up of many parts and many cultures.
We are part of a small club of countries that has both an indigenous population and a multicultural population that defines who we are. And inherent in all of this complexity, there is inevitably a history of dispossession, a fear of difference and a damage that appears in different ways, at different times and with different impacts that we call racism.
In order to continue to promote the positives of who we are as a country, we must ensure we address the negatives, and that is the focus of my presentation tonight.
Racism exists in Australia In my opening comments tonight, I took the time to acknowledge the traditional owners of the land and to pay my respects to elders past and present. This acknowledgement is a relatively recent feature of our history as a country, as we know that colonisation and white settlement paid little respect or acknowledgement that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders were the original and first inhabitants of this land.
It is worth remembering how breathtakingly audacious that was, particular when we know that the First Nations people of this country were here just a little bit longer, by tens of thousands of years. Our history as a country of predominately white settlers has not been good in this regard.
So it is true to say that our time since white settlement has quite obviously racist overtones. It is also true to say that prior to white settlement, the continent that we now call Australia was in fact multicultural, with many different First Nations peoples living across the vast expanse of land.
Racism does exist in Australia. We know this is a fact. Our own complaints at the Australian Human Rights Commission tell us that. It is also identified in research.
National data from the Challenging Racism Project  was released in and gave us information about the prevalence of racism and attitudes about racism.
We know from this research that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples continue to experience high levels of racism, across multiple settings. The research found that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander respondents returned much higher rates of experiences of racism: As a result, their experiences of racism vary considerably, and have also varied over time.
Alarmingly, some research indicates a significant increase in racism over recent years: Disturbingly, this research also highlighted the lack of awareness of most Australians about the issues faced by our First Nations peoples.
So the evidence says that racism exists in Australia. This should not surprise us as racism is to be found in every society on earth in different forms.
I want to talk a little bit about what racism is and how it impacts in the Australian context. My concern is that while the data suggests that racism does exist, we do not have much of a community dialogue about how racism manifests and the harm that it causes.
Without such understanding, it is difficult to see how we can move forward to eradicate racism. Racism takes many forms. In general, it is a belief that a particular race or ethnicity is inferior or superior to others. Racial discrimination involves any act where a person is treated unfairly or vilified because of their race, colour, descent, national or ethnic origin, religion or belief.
Racism is experienced across a spectrum.Racism in contemporary Australian society is not embodied in the same way. From a country defined by the ideal of a White Australia, . Oct 20, · Yes racism does exist in Australia, but there isn't one multicultural country in the world where racism doesn't exist.
Usually the most vocal advocates of bigotry and racism in Australia are the 2nd-3rd generation Anglo-Australians. “There certainly is a very strong element of casual racism in Australia,” says Gillian Triggs, president of the Australian Human Rights Commission .
Between June and June , racial vilification complaints to the commission increased by 19%. An increasing number of people think Australia is a racist country and there has been a rise in Indigenous people reporting prejudice, according to .
Unfortunately race discrimination, racism and racist violence remain a significant problem today in Australia.
Australia is deplorably racist. It was founded on a racist document and hasn’t improved. For readers who have chosen not to follow this particular “thread”, that’s the dilemma that’s.