YANQ has been working on multicultural issues for the past 20 years. We were funded between 1994 and 2009 for a Multicultural Policy Officer (MPO) position to progress multicultural youth issues across the state, network the sector, identify priority policy areas and coordinate responses.
YANQ also organised professional development and training forums focusing on Cross-cultural Youth Work Practice. We acted as the main advocacy body for issues faced by young people from diverse cultures and the professional needs of people working with them.
Unfortunately, in 2009 the Labor Government de-funded the MPO position, despite YANQ's work being independently evaluated and praised for its success in progressing multicultural youth issues. The loss of funding had a major impact on YANQ's ability to continue with networking, advocacy and representation of the multicultural youth sector and has left a huge gap in Queensland.
Since 2009, we have been working with the National Multicultural Youth Advocacy Network (which YANQ helped set up) and local stakeholders to try and keep a level of focus on multicultural youth issues in Queensland. During this time, Queensland's settlement services have been expanding rapidly and there has been a need for a network of settlement services. The Multicultural Development Association (MDA) has establish a Multicultural Youth Settlement Network for settlement workers in South east Queensland and YANQ has been working with MDA and ACCESS Community Services to develop a collaborative frame work for progressing broader multicultural youth issues at state and national levels.
In recent times there have been significant changes in Queensland including:
Image: Young Women's Policy Forum 2010
YANQ's view on the basis of these developments is that now is therefore an opportune time to revisit what these issues mean for Queensland and Australian society as a whole. We have an opportunity to input and shape the future if we mobilize effectively. YANQ needs our sector to come together and seize the opportunity to look at current practice, where the gaps are and to articulate a coherent position in which YANQ can robustly represent the Queensland youth sector from the position of shaping where multiculturalism goes to next rather than being passengers in a process that steam rolls us to outcomes that perpetuate the notion of multiculturalism being more of a myth rather than a reality. We believe robust conversation matched with practical action is critical to getting the best outcomes in progressing multiculturalism for the benefit of the Queensland young people we work with and serve.
To this end YANQ engaged an external consultant to find out the views of the youth sector from across Queensland in relation to the following questions. We believe this was critical in building upon YANQ’s previous position in relation to multiculturalism.
Stop Drugging our Kids!
Youth Primary Heath Development
Re-engagement in Education
17 year olds in Adult Prisons
Youth in Remand
Multiculturalism in Qld's Youth Sector - Where to Next?
YANQ has been seeking the views of the youth sector in relation to updating and refreshing our approach to advocating advancement of multiculturalism.
Last updated October 2012