GenerationOne Apologises Over 'Not Indigenous Enough" Claim
Thursday, 4th November 2010 at 3:03 pm
Indigenous Advocacy NFP, Generation One has sacked its recruiting contractor and apologised to a young Aboriginal woman after suggestions she might not look indigenous enough for a job promoting the organisation's Aboriginal employment initiative.
The Sydney Morning Herald reported on complaints made by Tarran Betterridge, 24, a Canberra university student about the recruitment process by a contractor for a GenerationOne event in the ACT. Betterridge applied for the post through ACT company Epic Promotions, which had been asked to find five people of ''indigenous heritage'' to staff a stall at Westfield in Canberra handing out flyers for GenerationOne which was founded by mining entrepreneur Andrew ''Twiggy'' Forrest.
The newspaper reported that Betterridge was interviewed for 20 minutes on October 20 and told she was ''perfect''. However, the interviewer, Emanuela D'Annibale, said she first had to check with her client, an agency called Let's Launch, because of guidelines specifying it wanted ''indigenous-looking'' people for the job.
In response to these comments, GenerationOne CEO, Tim Gartrell said the comment made by a recruiting contractor is completely inappropriate and doesn't reflect the views, practice or ethos of anyone in GenerationOne.
Gartrell says he was shocked to hear of them late yesterday afternoon when contacted by the newspaper.
He says the company involved has been instructed to apologise immediately to Tarran Betterridge and GenerationOne will no longer use their services.
He has also apologised unreservedly to Betterridge on behalf of GenerationOne for any offence that may have been caused.
He says GenerationOne encourages any event partner to employ indigenous staff, but at no time have they ever, nor would they ever, issue guidelines that make any reference to how any person looks.
He says GenerationOne is working hard to bring all Australians together to end the disparity and end prejudice.
He told ABC radio that at no point did they issue directives asking for Indigenous people who look Indigenous as this is totally against what they stand for.
Gartrell says it is the responsibility of the organisation to make sure that absolutely everyone who's involved is aware of the cultural complexities and this is a big lesson for for the organisation and this is something that they have to be aware of.
GenerationOne was founded by mining magnate Andrew Forrest and his wife Nicola in 2010 to encourage all Australians to work together to make this the last generation to suffer Indigenous disparity.