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Subject: Immigration »


Jupp Multicultural Program Review (Excerpt)

James Jupp.

Dr James Jupp discusses the Immigration Department and Ethnic Specific services.



Date Added:

25 June 2002


Making Multicultural Australia


mov (Quicktime);

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48 secs


Centre for Immigration and Multicultural Studies, Australian National University and Chair of the Review of Migrant and Multicultural Programs and Services, 1986

We found when we started that there was a lot of resistance to the thing (Review of Migrant and Multicultural Programs and Services) because they felt we'd been set up to cut back, particularly on ethnic-specific services. Now they didn't get that from us, because if the object of the Immigration Department was to cut back on ethnic-specific services, then they appointed all the wrong people to the Committee, you see. Because all four of us were in favour of it. Nevertheless there were certainly people in the Immigration Department who thought the Galbally approach had reached the end of its useful life, and you can see that in what's happened since - that they really wanted to move away from the ethnic-specific grants system, for some good reasons, towards a more planned system where they weren't just responding to requests from ethnic groups.


The review was set up - and this is what they assured me at the time - purely for administrative, routine purposes, although you never actually believe what the public service tell you. Because they don't necessarily know the truth themselves, let alone convey it to anybody else. But they kept telling me there wasn't a secret agenda. And their thought processes are so Byzantine, particularly in the Immigration Department, that you really don't know what to do with it.

The Galbally Report had been reviewed by AIMA (Australian Institute of Multicultural Affairs) in 1982, and they had done this very thorough million dollar analysis of Galbally. And one of their recommendations was that a further evaluation should be made in three years time. So it had come up.

The review was not set up in response to demands from the ethnic community or from anybody. It was set up as a routine commitment within the Immigration Department. Not only FECCA (Federation of Ethnic Communities' Councils of Australia), but the ECCs (Ethnic Communities' Councils) and a lot of the ethnic-specific services felt that the review would lead to a cutting back of services, because, you had to remember, it ran into a bit of a crisis about 1986. Cutting back was in the air.

But the other thing which became obviously much more noticeable after our Report, which wasn't entirely clear to us at the time, was that the Immigration Department really wanted to mainstream. They wanted to, in effect, as far as possible, actually pull out of welfare all together, but they couldn't do that because no-one else would take it on. And that was the hidden agenda.

And we just took the line that settlement could be a lifelong process, which was the direct opposite, I think, to what the Immigration Department wanted us to say. They kept wanting us to define settlement, which we refused to do, because we said it’s different for different people. And I think that is probably why the Report was buried, because we didn't really say what the FitzGerald Report later said.

A positive outcome of the Report was the setting up of what became OMA (the Office of Multicultural Affairs). We echoed Galbally and said it is no good having access and equity and equitable services and all this on paper if you don't have a monitoring agency within government, which would actually see this done.

I think the Report was a major influence on access and equity, as it developed, and we also were responsible for setting up the Office of Multicultural Affairs, although we called it Ethnic Affairs. Where we were, I think, wrong and where Bob Hawke was right, was putting it (the Office of Multicultural Affairs) in the Prime Minister’s Department. We had a very very long argument as to where the Office should be.

Interview for Making Multicultural Australia, 1994.