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Recommendation 25: Increasing diversity on the Ambulance Victoria Board

The recommendation

  1. The Ambulance Victoria Board and the Victorian Department of Health should expand and align the demographic data they collect about incoming directors and work together to develop and maintain an integrated diversity and skills matrix for the Ambulance Victoria Board. At a minimum, the matrix should include information about Aboriginality, age, disability, ethnicity, gender identity, race, religion and sexual orientation (in addition to director skills), with options for directors ‘not to disclose’.
  2. Ambulance Victoria should work closely with the Victorian Government to explore amending section 17(3) of the Ambulance Services Act 1986 (Vic) to require the Minister to have regard to diversity when recommending appointments to the Ambulance Victoria Board.
  3. The Ambulance Victoria Board should proactively assess and promote its demographic diversity as part of existing annual Board evaluations, informed by the integrated diversity and skills matrix.
  4. Ambulance Victoria should include a dedicated section in its annual report detailing the aggregate gender and diversity composition of the organisation’s Board and how the Board and the organisation have promoted and prioritised workplace equality.

What we are doing

  • Review, modify and implement ‘New Starter Form’
  • Develop communications describing the value that the Board and Ambulance Victoria attaches to diversity data, why it is collecting this information and how it intends to use it, including as part of the Board’s leadership role in modelling diversity and identify opportunities to disseminate these communications
  • Complete Board skills and diversity matrix template to capture new Board composition from July 2022
  • Determine whether any broader legislative reforms related to the diversity of public sector boards are being considered
  • Advocate for an amendment to the Ambulance Services Act 1986 (Vic) to require the Minister for Ambulance Services to have regard to diversity when recommending appointments to the Board
  • Develop and confirm a framework for assessing demographic diversity and the impact of demographic diversity on Board decision-making and performance
  • Amend Board, committees and individual assessment tools to incorporate new questions to enable annual evaluations and annual assessments (de-identified outcomes summary to be included in annual report)
  • Develop content for the 2021-22 annual report detailing the outcomes of the Commission’s independent review and the Board’s and organisation’s efforts to promote and prioritise workplace equality
  • Develop content for forward annual reports that detail aggregated Board diversity data, efforts to promote and prioritise workplace equality and statement of commitment to workplace equality (R40)

Where we are up to

  • The composition of AV’s Board changed from July 2022, introducing greater diversity to the Board.
  • AV has revised its ‘New Starter Form’ for incoming directors, informed by data collection requirements under the Gender Equality Act 2020 (Vic) and the Victorian Government’s template Board skills and diversity matrix. The revised form includes a statement describing the value that the Board and AV attaches to diversity data, why it is collecting this information and how it intends to use it. We are trialling the revised form with our new directors.
  • Safe Fair Inclusive: Your AV Roadmap 2022-27 includes a Statement of Commitment from the Board to a safe, fair and inclusive AV. The Board will reconsider its statement after engaging in facilitated reflective practice exercises throughout the second half of July, to ensure it continues to accurately reflect directors’ joint and individual commitments. The statement will also provide a foundation for forward annual reports (R40).

Timeframe

To be confirmed

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