We approached Danny White who is running for Division 5 in the Moreton Bay Region. He shared with us his thoughts on a multicultural Moreton Bay Region. You can read his response below.
Danny and his wife Sue moved to the Redcliffe Peninsula 35 years ago, and have called it home ever since. Danny's responses below come directly from his heart and from his experience with the community.
MACS Inc. asked Danny what plans he has to contribute to building cohesive and more resilient communities?
Danny: I believe all people in our community and country should be treated equal regardless of their background, ancestral or cultural. Australia as a whole, and the Moreton Bay Region, are blessed with such a diverse cultural community.
I believe the most important tool to help break down barriers and misconceptions is knowledge, awareness, and, most importantly, interaction. People are afraid of what they don’t know.
MACS Inc. asked Danny how he intends to support community grassroots organisations, such as MACS Inc, in delivering culturally rich and diverse experiences for residents and visitors alike; as well as establishing and maintaining projects and initiatives that help culturally and linguistically diverse communities grow and thrive?
Danny: Being a Chef and local business owner for more than 20 years, while running the Scarborough Lights community volunteer group, I have been a part of developing, organising and participating in many promotions and events. If our volunteer group, working closely with our local businesses, did not lay the groundwork, then nothing would have been done. I believe it is Council’s job to liaise with and support those who bring their ideas and proposals to the table.
Individual groups and associations in this area all have their own unique offerings, which either individually or collectively, could create opportunities to showcase their cultures and diversity through events, displays and experiences to share with the public. This is one area that, with the right support, will always provide a successful way to interact with the community. People travel from all over South-East Queensland to experience a cultural event. Paniyiri - the Greek Festival in Brisbane - is one of many examples of groups and organisations working together with local Councils to successfully deliver culturally rich and diverse experiences for everyone to enjoy. I understand from experience that it is a lot of hard work that is also very rewarding in so many ways.
MACS Inc. asked Danny if there are issues he has personally identified in the Region, from a multicultural perspective, that she feels require attention and solutions?
Danny: Again, I think there has been a lack of support and promotion for events from multicultural organisations. More consultation, and the creation of a Liaison Officer to work with Council-sponsored events, would be a good start. Any successful event is a great benefit to the whole Moreton Bay Region.
MACS Inc. asked Danny what his plans are for supporting the migrant and refugee business community?
Danny: As stated previously, we have had our own business in the Moreton Bay region for 20 years. Every day is a challenge. Through the diverse range of multicultural organisations in the region, and in conjunction with local business groups (eg your local Chambers of Commerce) and Council representatives, forums could be arranged by your organisations to identify markets, strategies and goals.
MACS Inc. asked Danny is he believes it is important for Moreton Bay Regional Council to create and implement a Multicultural Action Plan?
Danny: I believe multicultural groups you represent should approach Moreton Bay Regional Council with their ideas for short and long-term projects. It is no good Council representatives implementing an Action Plan without extensive collaboration. You need to be the driving force, and then it’s up to Council to listen to your ideas. If I were elected as Councillor, I would certainly listen, while at the same time appreciate the effort and time that goes in to organising and supporting our various multi-cultural groups and organisations, and appreciate the richness of diversity they represent.
You can learn more about Danny and what he stands for by visiting/contacting:
Facebook page: facebook.com/dannywhitediv5
We wish you all the very best with your campaign Danny. #unityindiversity