WHY FORM THE CCCA?
The formation of the Chinese Community Council of Australia is overdue. Many major communities such as the Jewish, Italian, Greek and Lebanese have an umbrella body which deals with the Australian interests of these communities. Chinese speakers rank number two in New South Wales (after English speaking), yet they have no umbrella body to represent and advocate their interests.
Since the 1990s, recipients of government grants are expected not to engage in advocacy. Although any peak Chinese community organisation has the potential to become an umbrella body, their acceptance of government grants makes it difficult for them to play the advocacy role.
There are some Chinese organisations which claim to represent other organisations that are not recipients of government grants and could take up the advocacy role. However, they do not have the skills or experience to advocate or deal with Australian governments on policy matters such as immigration and settlement, housing, education, health, aged and other day to day issues affecting all Australians. There are some smaller and articulate organisations but their advocacy work is limited to single issues.
It is now clear that there should be an umbrella body that can advocate for the needs of the Chinese community. Such a body should be financially independent of government funding so it will be able to speak out without fear or favour. This body would draw its funds from the Chinese community and businesses and be served by individuals with the relevant skills and experience to ensure that the Chinese community has an active umbrella body to look after the community.
There are many talented people in the Chinese community who have developed their skills and experience in policy and advocacy work in other Chinese organisations and/or the Ethnic Community Council of NSW. They are now willing to come out and serve on an umbrella body which only deals with policy.
The CCCA will take up the responsibility of an umbrella body and this body will have the potential to unite Australians of Chinese descent from China, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Taiwan and other parts of the world, simply because it caters for the common Australian interests of all Chinese Australians.
Dr Anthony Pun - 0414 976 363
Email - firstname.lastname@example.org