New VMC Civic Participation Kit

14 June 2018

A new toolkit from the Victorian Multicultural Commission aims to improve the engagement of multicultural communities in planning decisions.

Launched at the Municipal Council of Victoria (MAV) Rural and Regional Planning Conference on 31 May 2018, the kit offers practical resources for those who are new to community engagement, as well as experienced practitioners who want to improve the way they engage communities.

A range of best practice tips and tools aim to equip those who oversee planning processes to promote an inclusive culture around decision-making, involve multicultural communities, consider community opinion and knowledge, and facilitate constructive dialogue between decision-makers and communities.

The kit also seeks to inform Victorians from diverse backgrounds about how to engage with other stakeholders and decision-makers in planning processes that affect them.

Readers can draw on variety of resources, including a set of key principles for effective engagement, how to identify barriers to participation for multicultural communities, ways to develop inclusive mechanisms and how to design approaches to community engagement.

The kit also offers checklists to more easily understand stakeholder issues, communicate well about engagement processes and assess and mitigate risk throughout planning processes, alongside research, case studies and data sources to get prepared.

Involving communities in decisions that concern them is a key part of improving civic participation, which helps to determine policy options and services that work as well as strengthen the fabric of communities.

Commission Chairperson Ms Helen Kapalos said the VMC Civic Participation Kit was a good contribution to building inclusive communities.

“Ultimately it’s about us all having an equal right to belong to our respective communities, regardless of faith, culture or background. “

“Inclusive communities are built when everyone’s rights are respected. We hope this civic participation kit is a good start,” said Ms Kapalos.

Whether you’re overseeing a planning process or participating in one, you can find a range of tools to inform an inclusive approach in the VMC Civic Participation Kit.

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