Hakan Akyol describes the strategies of the ECCV during the 1990s
02 March 2009
source not available
The ECCs we had in the sort of 70s, 80s, certainly had very much an advocacy sort of type role, I think the notion in I guess, in the 90s was the Ethnic Committee Council of Victoria began to engage more broadly with the rest of the community as well. And so became involved in other broader issues, began to make statements regarding the state budget or the federal budget, not just on the ethnic components of it, but overall and supporting VCOSS campaigns, or union campaigns, or even having meeting, forging sort of partnerships with business council on population policy and higher immigration intakes. It was actually seeing sort of a broader picture and that we, as part of the overall Australian community and society had a say.
It also in that period began to broaden out its membership as well. It developed stronger links and supported the development of some regional ethnic committees councils as well, so forging those links and supporting the regional areas and migrant communities that were there as well. Obviously there were some that were quite significant, Shepparton and Mildura that were already involved. But in the late 90s supporting the establishment of an ethnic committees council type entity in Ballarat, in Bendigo, relatively recently in Wangaratta and those kind of sort of links etcetera and that also partly follows on from sort of Commonwealth and State Government policies of trying to encourage a sort of regional migration as well and sort of revitalisation of some of the regional areas in some areas where populations had been dropping and decreasing.
So I think that was and its also its own membership bases sort of moving from what was essentially predominantly European community organisations and involved sort of, encouraging the involvement of Asian and African community organisations, South American organisations. Again, to varying degrees they were involved but just placing those sort of more involved.
Establishing policy committees for various degrees of success. But with those policy committees, not just having community representatives on say, employment committee or on justice committee but actually drawing into the justice committee, bringing someone in the community of legal centres or lawyers and barristers that were working in other cases, not necessarily immigration law or anything, but getting expertise booked in to actually having a greater input in terms of submissions and policies and developing those, employments area, bringing people from academic backgrounds who have expertise on all sort of employment areas, rather than having drawing from the community representatives, which again, is still there and involved, but bringing some additional expertise and I think that was some of the things that sort of set us aside from some of the other developments and elsewhere.