Advancing the work of welcoming and inclusion in 2019
In our line of work, misinformation is often the greatest enemy.
Recent media reports of regional Queensland being ‘flooded by thousands of migrants’ is a good example. Claims that our current work with the Queensland Government would result in up to 10,000 migrants settling in Rockhampton are curious, disappointing and patently false. When you’re not approached for information or comment, yet you are mentioned and informally quoted – it’s likely an agenda, other than the truth, is being driven.
Sensational headlines, populism, thought bubbles, fear-mongering or hysteria, won’t offer solutions. Instead, they create even more problems.
Our partnerships with the Queensland State Government, various local councils and their communities exist to explore the benefits of welcoming and inclusion to social, cultural, economic and civic life.
Our work is by invitation, evidenced-based, and consultative. Our work considers the complexities and nuance of local communities, their needs, and barriers to success.
One local council near the Queensland border is seeking to attract up to eight families to fill jobs, keep the local school open and contribute to community life. Another local council is grappling with how they might engage more effectively with the existing community to build social cohesion and understand the needs and aspirations of a particular cultural group who want to grow business opportunities that would benefit the region. Such work is necessary if we are to address the complexity of issues facing communities across Australia.
Sensational headlines, populism, thought bubbles, fear-mongering or hysteria, won’t offer solutions. Instead, they create even more problems. What is required is research, data, dialogue, investment and a whole-of-community approach.
May your 2019 be marked by more evidence and less alarm – considered, ‘deep’ work that increasingly builds communities where everyone can belong.
Originally published on LinkedIn.