Coast FM Diversity, Access & Equity Policy Introduction In order to affect the Coast FM’s vision and purpose as detailed in its Strategic Plan, the station affirms and aims to reflect within its own structure the community broadcasting sector’s principles of diversity, access and equity. In order to best meet and support the needs of the community broadcasting sector, the COAST FM strives to ensure that all stakeholders have equal access to relevant COAST FM information, services and opportunities, and that its culture and management systems are aligned with these principles. The COAST FM is committed not only to complying with applicable law such as the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 and Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission Act 1986 in all of its operations but aspires to set an example for the community broadcasting sector and the broader community by promoting and embracing diversity and cultural sensitivity, and by fostering anti-discrimination awareness and behaviour amongst staff and volunteers in our commitment to achieving social justice and a thriving community media sector. Purpose This Diversity, Access & Equity Policy provides a framework to: • Ensure the membership of the COAST FM’s Board and Committees are appropriately diverse and to establish how these objectives can be met and measured. • Bring together the different accountabilities involved in different areas of accessibility, and to clarify the nature of these responsibilities in each area. • Integrate a philosophy of equity into all the organisation’s activities and to establish and • promote accessible practices in our operations. Definitions Diversity refers to the visible and invisible differences that exist between people, such as gender, culture, ethnicity, physical and mental ability, sexual orientation, age, economic status, language, faith, nationality, education, geographical location and family/marital status. It also refers to diverse ways of thinking and ways of working. This policy should be read in conjunction with the COAST FM Consultation Policy. Coast FM Diversity and Equity Policy. Policy The Coast FM respects and values the advantages of diversity and the benefits that flow from the integration of diversity principles throughout its culture and management structures. The COAST FM seeks to add to, nurture and develop itself through the collective skills and diverse experience and attributes of the members of its Board and Committees through a blend of skills, experiences, perspectives, styles and attributes including their culture, gender, age and geographic location. While not limited to the following groups, current priorities for affirmative action within leadership structures at the COAST FM include: • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples • Women • People with culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds • People with a disability • Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex people • Young people • People from non-metropolitan areas The Coast FM promotes diversity, supports equal rights, and does not advocate, support or practice discrimination based on race, religion, age, national origin, language, gender, sexual orientation, or mental or physical handicap or disability, except where affirmative action may be required to redress disadvantage. The COAST FM will make all reasonable efforts to allow people who experience difficulty accessing our information and services to overcome any impediments. The COAST FM commits itself to: Diversity: The COAST FM will develop strategies, initiatives and programs to promote diversity on its Board and Committees. Gender diversity: The COAST FM is committed to achieving gender balance on its Board and Committees and will set and publish measurable objectives and targets to achieve gender balance. The COAST FM’s gender balance target is to reach 40 per cent men, 40 per cent women and 20 per cent either for COAST FM Boards and Committees by 1 July 2018. Diverse appointments: The COAST FM will set and publish procedures to achieve diversity of appointments on its Board and Committees. Reconciliation: The COAST FM supports the Australian Declaration Towards Reconciliation. The COAST FM further supports the National Strategies to Advance Reconciliation, as proposed by the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation and the work of Reconciliation Australia. Coast FM Diversity and Equity Policy • Access and Equity: ensuring our information and services are available to everyone who is entitled to them, free from discrimination. Services will be developed and delivered on the basis of fair treatment of all stakeholders. • Communication: using all necessary and cost-effective strategies to inform eligible applicants of available opportunities, and to provide information in forms that are accessible to people with different abilities or from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds. • Consultation and Responsiveness: remaining sensitive to the needs and requirements of stakeholders with different abilities or from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds; consulting with stakeholders about the adequacy, design and standard of services; and being responsive as far as practicable to the particular circumstances of individuals. Coast FM Diversity and Equity Policy Diversity, Access & Equity Procedures Responsibilities It shall be the responsibility of the Board to establish and maintain policies and procedures and to bring these procedures into effect. It shall be the responsibility of the staff to ensure implementation of these policies and procedures. Procedures 1. Promote diversity in the membership of the COAST FM Board and Committees. a. Recruitment practices and succession planning: i. Prior to promoting vacancies or opportunities, conduct a diversity audit of the relevant Committee and determine whether there are any unrepresented groups or skills gaps. ii. Effort should be made to identify prospective appointees who have relevant diversity attributes. Under-represented groups will be particularly targeted for professional development and within the promotion of vacancies or for other opportunities where relevant, with reference to the published Diversity, Access & Equity Policy. iii. Collect information within application / nomination processes in order to affect the Diversity Policy (see Privacy Policy) iv. Ensure that selection processes, including appointment committees for Board, Committee (and staff) appointments, meet diversity principles. For example: interview panels should, to the degree feasible, include a diversity of backgrounds and be gender balanced. Shortlists for prospective appointees should include at least one male and one female candidate. b. Accountability: 1. Establish a benchmark for targeted groups and track and publish progress towards achieving diversity within the COAST FM annual report. 2. All COAST FM staff shall, wherever feasible, have adequate support and training to develop and provide information and services accessible to all people. Staff shall, where necessary, receive ongoing cultural awareness or working with diversity training so that they develop knowledge and skills to work effectively from a cultural framework. 3. In its role as an employer, the COAST FM will ensure all people have equal access to advertised positions, interviews, equipment, office accommodation, staff training and promotion. 4. COAST FM shall, wherever feasible, assess proposals for any new (or substantially revised) policies or programs for their direct impact on people from a range of cultural, linguistic and ability backgrounds prior to any decision to pursue such proposals. Any new (or substantially revised) policies or programs that impact in different ways on people from different cultural, linguistic and ability backgrounds shall, wherever feasible, be Coast FM Diversity and Equity Policy developed in consultation with people from those backgrounds or their representative organisations. 5. The COAST FM shall provide resources so that publicly available and accessible information on its policies and programs is where necessary communicated appropriately to people from a range of cultural, linguistic and ability backgrounds, and especially to those identified as having a high impediments to access. We will: a. Ensure our website and online grants management services comply with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 to an appropriate level. b. Where necessary and feasible, provide for the special needs of clients diverse abilities by providing material in disability-appropriate formats, such as in a preferred file format to facilitate the most effective use of accessibility software, or in hard copy if preferred. c. The provision and maintenance of current information in languages other than English is cost-prohibitive for an organisation of our size and capabilities, but where necessary and feasible we will provide for the special needs of clients from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds by providing material electronically to facilitate cost-effective language assistance through the use of interpreting software. d. Where necessary and feasible, provide for the special needs of clients in remote areas on a case by case basis through developing liaison support arrangements and a flexible approach on the means of information provision. References and helpful links: • Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0: http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG20/ • Google translate: http://translate.google.com/ • Australian Declaration Towards Reconciliation: • http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/other/IndigLRes/car/2000/12/pg3.htm