22 November 2012FWBC launches resources for CALD workers

Fair Work Building & Construction has launched a suite of resources dedicated to raising awareness of workplace rights and responsibilities among culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) workers in the building and construction industry.

Many workers in the Australian building industry come from CALD backgrounds and are considered vulnerable due to a limited understanding about their workplace rights or how to seek help if an issue arises.

FWBC chief executive Leigh Johns said it was important that information was easily accessible to CALD workers.

“To address this, we have translated a range of materials into eight different languages – Mandarin, Cantonese, Vietnamese, Spanish, Serbian, Korean, Arabic and Tagalog,” Mr Johns said.

The languages were selected based on employee representation in the industry. Each language now has its own page on the FWBC website (www.fwbc.gov.au).

“The materials developed include an educative video, brochure, case studies and an employment checklist which provide the information CALD workers need to comply with Australian workplace laws and demonstrate how FWBC can help.”

FWBC held community consultations across Australia in April this year to investigate issues specific to CALD workers in the building and construction industry.

Key findings showed CALD workers face language barriers, have limited understanding of Australian cultural norms, have a fear of authority organisations such as government and experience a lack of workplace rights awareness and knowledge of where and how to access information.

As well as accessing information online, CALD workers can get hard copies of materials from a range of multicultural hubs and community groups.

“This should be a signal to employers who may take advantage of vulnerable CALD workers, that FWBC is committed to educating these workers on their rights and entitlements, and building relationships of trust with them” Mr Johns said.

“CALD employees are important contributors to the building and construction industry. They should receive the same rights, entitlements and information as any other worker.”

To access the materials online, visit www.fwbc.gov.au and follow the links.