Employment and engagement resources

The activities of the Office of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Employment and Engagement (OATSIEE) are underpinned by its Employment Strategy and Engagement Strategy. Activities and initiatives are also underpinned by the following functional support areas, industrial instruments and policies.

Policies and documents

Australian legislation, policies and procedures

Under the NSW Anti-Discrimination Act 1977 and Federal laws, employers and supervisors must treat all their employees, and anyone who applies for a job with them, fairly. In particular, they must not treat them unfairly, or harass them, on the basis of:

  • sex 
  • race, colour, ethnic or ethno-religious background, descent or nationality
  • marital status
  • disability
  • homosexuality 
  • age 
  • transgender status
  • carers' responsibilities.

The anti-discrimination laws allow employers to discriminate in favour of some groups over others when it is a genuine occupational qualification to be a certain race, sex or age. In some cases, employers need to apply for and get a specific exemption from the anti-discrimination laws before they can do this. Exemptions are only usually granted where targeting the job to a particular group will promote equal opportunity by helping to redress or correct disadvantages that group may have experienced in employment.

UWS embraces the fundamental guiding principles of mutual respect and partnership outlined in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples. (opens in a new window) The Declaration provides a framework which respects Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples' rights and promotes actions that respect and protect Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures.

Equal employment opportunity

The law states that all NSW and Commonwealth public sector organisations (including NSW universities) must prepare Equal Employment Opportunity plans. These plans are designed to ensure all employees get equal opportunity in the workplace.

They must also pay particular attention to certain groups known to have been disadvantaged in the past. These groups are women, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, people from non-English speaking backgrounds and people with disabilities.For more information, visit: