Report examines local government’s role in supporting refugees and CALD communities

The UTS Centre for Local Government, in partnership with the International Centre for Muslim and non-Muslim Understanding at the University of South Australia, has released a new report that investigates the activities and programs seven councils have put in place to provide support for newly-arrived refugees.

The report, titled Local Government Services for Refugees Focusing on African Muslim Refugees, examines initiatives that seven Australian local governments are taking to support refugee and CALD communities in settling, employment, education and housing.

The report examined local government programs in Bankstown, Canterbury and Auburn in Sydney; Townsville and Toowoomba in Queensland; Hume in Victoria and City of Charles Sturt in South Australia. It involved scoping and reviewing council websites and interviewing key council personnel.

An initiative highlighted in the report is the Refugee Welcome Zone, an initiative of the Refugee Council of Australia currently involving 87 local government councils around the country that have made a commitment to welcoming refugees into the community, upholding their human rights, demonstrating compassion and enhancing cultural and religious diversity in the community.

The report is available in full on the Australian Centre of Excellence for Local Government website