Diversity Council established
The APS has long been committed to progressing equity and diversity to ensure that the public service workforce is representative of the broader Australian community. Despite this commitment, two groups in particular continue to be drastically under-represented in the APS: Indigenous Australians and people with disability. Representation rates for both groups have been in steady decline since the late 1990s.
To redress this, the Secretaries Board has established a Diversity Council, which will provide visible, strategic leadership on diversity issues, and aims to motivate improvements to diversity outcomes, including employment outcomes for Indigenous Australians and people with disability, in the APS.
The Council is chaired by Dr Ian Watt AO, Secretary, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (Chair) and comprise:
- Ms Kathryn Campbell, CSC Secretary, Department of Human Services
- Mr Drew Clarke PSM, Secretary, Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism
- Mr Michael D’Ascenzo AO, Commissioner of Taxation, Australian Taxation Office
- Ms Jane Halton Secretary, Department of Health and Ageing
- Mr Duncan Lewis AO DSC CSC Secretary, Department of Defence
- Ms Lisa Paul AO PSM, Secretary, Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations
- Mr Finn Pratt PSM, Secretary, Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs
- Mr Stephen Sedgwick, Australian Public Service Commissioner (Deputy Chair)
- Mr Roger Wilkins AO, Secretary, Attorney-General’s Department
The Council held its first meeting on 16 March 2012, where members agreed on an initial range of strategies designed to bring visibility to diversity issues, share and promulgate best practice and monitor agency performance in improving workforce diversity.
The Council also agreed to establish a supporting reference group, comprising Deputy Secretaries (or equivalent) from across the APS and two external subject-matter experts - Dr Rhonda Galbally and Dr Jackie Huggins.