Meeting Indigenous Employment Targets: ‘ Just Bums On Seats ’?. Elizabeth Ganter, ANU PhD Graduate 2010 Assistant Director, Research and Innovation Department of Business and Employment Presentation to HR Forum, SkyCity Casino, Darwin, 16 March 2011.
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Meeting Indigenous Employment Targets:
‘Just Bums On Seats’?
Elizabeth Ganter, ANU PhD Graduate 2010
Assistant Director, Research and Innovation Department of Business and Employment
Presentation to HR Forum, SkyCity Casino,
Darwin, 16 March 2011
Photograph courtesy of the NT Administration’s 1967 Report (Commonwealth Parliamentary Papers 1969:51)
10% Indigenous employment across the NTPS by 2012
= ye olde targets
10% by 1982, 15% by 1985, and 20% by 1990
Chief Minister Paul Everingham, 1980
What’s different this time?
– consistent ratio at all stages of recruitment
So Indigenous careers in orbit NTPS Indigenous sector
25% of interviewees, but not 25% in all categories:
…connections undervalued yet can’t leave Indigenous programs – 80% in exclusively Indigenous programs, another 10% had responsibilities overseeing Indigenous programs; only 1 interviewee had extricated him/herself completely.
‘This is Jay. He does all the Aboriginal stuff.’
Jay, Darwin 2007
You’ll sit in meetings …– you’ll be talking about a certain place and about issues in terms of Indigenous people and then they’ll look at you and say, ‘What do you reckon?’
Spike, Darwin 2007
Just seek one Indigenous person’s point of view and you’ve got it!
Georgia, Darwin 2007
Because I’m a black woman, they just agree with everything I say. I could tell them the sky is grey. But it’s blue. How can it be?
Deborah, Darwin 2007
I write like I talk …. I wanna learn about – you know, that high level writing
Carly, Alice Springs 2007
Under-contributing.Seen as partisan, arguing
The eyes and ears of government ?…
Really you just walked around and had a look and went back to the office… You feel stupid. Davey
(never senior) Dwn 07
The only thing they’re doing different is that they’ve got the person sitting there
Julia, Darwin 2007
I know my stuff… thought it would have been seen as a resource…[I’m] better outside
Hanna, Darwin 2007
If you try and walk the tightrope, one group’s going to have a go at you. The Indigenous mob just criticise you. The other group
[bureaucracy] will go around you….
Bruce, Darwin 2007
Shut out – treated as policy subject
~ ROLE MODELS ~
How can you make decisions about Aboriginal people when you can’t even talk to the people you’ve got here that are blackfellas?...
So that’s why I question whether we’re just numbers, we’re justbums on seats
Sarah, Darwin 2007
To reach 10% by 2012, keep them!
Darwin, Alice Springs, Tennant Creek, Katherine and remoter communities
Professor Tim Rowse
Desert Knowledge Cooperative Research Centre
The Australian National University
– School of History, Research School of Social Sciences , Canberra – – North Australia Research Unit, Darwin –
Northern Territory History Grants Program
The Northern Territory Government
for research access and study leave
Mobile: 0400 124639