Federal, State and Territory governments should agree upon a definition of ‘bias-motivated crime’ that is officially recognised throughout Australia and establish an official, centralised, system for the nation-wide recording of such crimes and their classification according to agreed categories, including race, national or ethnic origin, language, colour, religion, gender, age, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation, or any other similar factor. Law enforcement officers should be provided with the skills and training necessary to correctly identify and classify reports of bias-motivated crimes. The methods by which data concerning bias-motivated crimes is collected and classified in Canada should be emulated in Australia.
These are among the 14 recommendations made by the ECAJ in its submission to the current Senate Inquiry into protecting and strengthening Australia’s multiculturalism and social inclusion.
The submission also calls for the National Education Curriculum to include critical thinking skills to overcome prejudice, and the teaching of enlightenment values as a part of core subjects such as History and Science. Education in these values should also be included in English language programs for adult new arrivals.
Please click HERE for access to the Submission.