The best way to create a Reconciliation Action Plan

Reconciliation Action Plans are about taking good intent and turning it into action.

The Black Lives Matter protests that have erupted across the globe have caused a whole lot of Australians to rethink the problems affecting Indigenous communities.

The health, wealth and employment gaps between Indigenous Australians and the remainder of the inhabitants are well known, but the protests created new urgency to do something about them.

In July, the Australian government unveiled new Shut the Hole targets including reducing Indigenous incarceration rates.

For organisations that really feel the urgency act there’s one apparent solution – a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).

In 2006, Reconciliation Australia launched RAPs as a way for organisations to incorporate strategic reconciliation initiatives as a part of their enterprise plans. The goal of a RAP is to create meaningful opportunities on your organisation to actively help and recognise Indigenous Australians. Like many initiatives, reconciliation is a process that will evolve as you and your organisation start to take action.

RAPs are broken down into 4 maturity levels that reflect the place organisations are of their reconciliation journey. They are: Replicate, Innovate, Stretch and Elevate. Each has a corresponding RAP type organisations can pursue. For instance, the Innovate level is for organisations that already understand the place they’ll improve on Indigenous points and have begun taking motion to actively address them.

Step one for all organisations is to find out its maturity level. “Contact the RAP crew at Reconciliation Australia and discover out which degree you will start at,” says Anthony. “The RAP team will ship you a template that can define what you should do. There are some primary compulsory actions required by Reconciliation Australia akin to celebrating nationwide Reconciliation Day and growing knowledge of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures. After that, it’s in regards to the changes you can make.”

Because loads of organisations will start on the Reflect stage, this guide will define the pillars that you must establish to start your reconciliation journey.


This is the place it all begins.

It may assist to look into why RAPs are so important as well as the present points facing Indigenous people. Reports corresponding to Shut the Gap can provide context to your RAP and might show you how to with the next step.

Secure help

A part of a profitable RAP is establishing support for reconciliation initiatives across the whole organisation. In most cases this needs to start on the top.

“Most frequently I find that if people are presented with the info, they pretty quickly get on board with wanting to be a part of the reconciliation movement,”

“Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons are three per cent of the population. They’ll’t do the heavy lifting when it comes to change and infrastructure change, societal change, or changing attitudes.

“RAPs are a way of stepping in and making significant change.”

Over 1,000 organisations have formalised RAPs, and their implementation has had a real impact on improving employee understanding of Indigenous points, the Reconciliation Australia 2018 RAP Impact report found. This can have a flow-on effect. It makes workers more engaged with their community and they usually select to donate to, or volunteer with, Indigenous organisations as a result.

A RAP also solidifies your organisation’s commitment to creating a culturally safe work atmosphere, which expands your recruiting pool by making your workplace a more attractive employer to Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander employees.

Establish a working group

The subsequent step is to kind a working group that can oversee your entire RAP process. This group will must be made up of assorted representatives from all sectors of your organisation.

The group is in control of planning and implementing the RAP, so it might want to include members who’ve some precise power to make changes within the organisation, and members who understand it from a policy and tradition perspective.

Lastly, for the RAP to be really successful, you’ll want involvement from members who work with clients or clients, so that folks outside your organisation understand you are attempting to make a difference.

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