Our Vision for Reconciliation
At Qantas, we strive to reflect the Spirit of Australia.
A spirit that’s over 60,000 years old and celebrates the knowledge and cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Our vision for reconciliation is a shared national identity that will be achieved through the social, economic and cultural inclusion of all First Nations Peoples.
The Qantas Group First Nations Strategy
As Australia’s national carrier, we have a clear role to play when it comes to reconciliation.
We proudly advance this through the Qantas Group First Nations Strategy vision: to create a shared national identity that celebrates the knowledge and cultures of First Nations Peoples.
This vision can only be accomplished through the social, economic and cultural inclusion of First Nations People across the Qantas Group, which is realised through four key focus areas:
- providing meaningful careers,
- diversifying our supplier base and spend,
- amplifying First Nations experiences and culture through our customer journey, and
- strengthening our reconciliation journey through community engagements.
Each focus area is guided by objectives and initiatives that are inaugurated across the Qantas Group.
Despite the challenging operating environment at the time, Qantas was proud to launch an interim Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) in January 2021. While the pandemic impacted some of our RAP activities, we remained committed to delivering and building on our pre-pandemic RAP commitments.
We used this period as an opportunity to focus on how we could reset and develop innovative approaches to both our RAP and broader Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander engagement.
We engaged the services of specialist First Nations consultancy, 15 Times Better, to complete a comprehensive review of the Qantas Group’s First Nations activity engagement. The process resulted in the development of an overarching Qantas Group First Nations Engagement Strategy that will guide all of our First Nations focussed activities across Qantas, Jetstar, Qantas Freight and Qantas Loyalty businesses.
Qantas is working with Reconciliation Australia on our next Reconciliation Action Plan.
Read more about The Qantas Group First Nations Strategy (PDF)
Our Focus Areas
Sustainable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Careers
Sustainable, meaningful careers are critical to our vision for reconciliation. We aim to build on our long, proud history of engaging with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples by providing First Nations representation, leadership and engagement opportunities across the Qantas Group.
By removing barriers to employment and promotion, we’re striving to empower Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to contribute meaningfully within their communities and in the workplace.
Read more about our Qantas Group First Nations Employment Strategy (PDF)
First Nations Employment Strategy
Our dedicated Qantas Group strategy focuses on:
- removing barriers for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander candidates,
- reviewing and relaunching Pathway Programs,
- resetting employment-related partnerships,
- finding opportunities to embed First Nations employment with third party partners,
- delivering support initiatives as part of onboarding and ongoing employment,
- increasing First Nations leadership representation by reviewing the Emerging Leaders Program,
- designing tailored training for all key stakeholders involved in the recruitment and development process, and
- relaunching our First Nations Employee Network — Daramu.
Underpinning our commitment to reconciliation is our Cultural Learning Framework: a comprehensive and inclusive customer service training suite that will be rolled out to 10,000 customer-facing front-line staff, leaders and people managers to foster an awareness, understanding and appreciation of First Nations knowledge, cultures histories and rights.
Qantas is proud to be working with Johnny Briggs to deliver face-to-face cultural confidence training, alongside an ongoing partnership with Jawun to deliver secondment and immersion opportunities. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Awareness by SBS (online) is also being rolled out more broadly to the wider Qantas group workforce.
We also continue to work with CareerTrackers, Maxima, The Clontarf Foundation and Australian Indigenous Education Foundation (AIEF) to provide education and career opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students.
A key part of our vision for reconciliation is the economic inclusion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander suppliers bring uniquely Australian experiences and products to our customers while generating wealth, cultural connections and opportunities for local communities.
In FY23, Qantas has achieved a significant milestone, with expenditures of $14.1 million spread across 30 different First Nations businesses. This impressive growth in collaborating with Indigenous businesses underscores our steadfast commitment to supporting this sector. Looking ahead, we have plans to continue this upward trajectory throughout FY24 and beyond.
To improve cash flow and business outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander owned businesses, during FY23 we implemented a reduction in payment times for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander suppliers, which is also available to Australian-based small businesses who meet eligibility requirements.
We're now instilling new principles to increase the procurement of First Nations goods and services, with a significant focus on purchasing carbon offsets from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander owned or operated projects. Our commitment to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander economic development is reflected in our investment in Arnhem Land Fire Abatement (ALFA) projects. ALFA is an entirely Aboriginal-owned, not-for-profit carbon offsetting business created by Aboriginal Traditional Owners in Arnhem Land to support their engagement with the carbon industry.
Qantas is a founding member of Supply Nation, an organisation connecting Australian companies and government with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesses, and we continue to be a gold sponsor of the flagship annual Supply Nation Connect tradeshow and gala dinner.
We believe that strong relationships with suppliers deliver mutually beneficial outcomes. Qantas was honoured to win the 2023 Supply Nation Supplier Diversity Partnership of the Year award for our partnership with Yaru Water Australia. Yaru Water is Australia’s first Indigenous water company and we partnered with them to bring our First and Business Class customers high-quality and sustainably sourced water from Bundjalung country in Northern NSW.
Watch the videos below to learn more about our partnerships with Yaru Water and Dreamtime Tuka.
Promoting First Nations Peoples and cultures throughout our customer experience
As the national carrier, we’re uniquely positioned to connect people to the world’s oldest living cultures through our domestic and international networks. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures are integral to the Spirit of Australia and should form a part of every customer's journey.
We have introduced maps of Indigenous Australia from the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS) in many of our lounges.
We're also proud to include the Acknowledgement of Country across all Qantas and Jetstar services. The Acknowledgement of Country is aimed at raising awareness among our customers of the history of our country and making this recognition a part of our everyday language.
Community Engagement and Partnerships
In 1994, we commissioned our inaugural First Nations-designed livery in partnership with Balarinji Indigenous design studio, with the launch of Wunala Dreaming on a Boeing 747.
We’ve since seen an additional 4 liveries join our Flying Art Series, including, Emily Kame Kngwarreye, on a B787 Dreamliner.
In 2000, we began our partnership with the Bangarra Dance Theatre, recognising the important role the performing arts play in sharing the culture and stories of First Nations people with the broader Australian public.
In 2019, Qantas joined other organisations to publicly support the Uluru Statement from the Heart which calls for Voice, Treaty and Truth. We also took action and responded to the Interim Voice co-design report (PDF) in support of the many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and leaders who have worked tirelessly for reconciliation.
In August 2023, the Qantas Group supported the 2023 Indigenous Voice to Parliament referendum. Whilst the referendum was unsuccessful, The Qantas Group’s commitment to First Nations peoples and communities remains unwavering. We will continue to aspire for meaningful change and practical outcomes through our First Nations strategy.
We're focused on engaging Australian communities by:
- leveraging our voice to influence public understanding on issues that impact First Nations Peoples,
- promoting stories of reconciliation in action to increase public and employee engagement,
- strengthening partnerships that directly contribute to Closing the Gap,
- expanding our support of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander tourism industry,
- develop and implement a new Qantas First Nations governance model, including the engagement with an external advisory council and our First Nations employees via our Daramu Employee Network, and
- collaborating with other organisations on their reconciliation journey.
Qantas continues to commit to multi-channel campaigns for both NAIDOC Week and National Reconciliation Week to promote positive relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and non-First Nations people.
Our Reconciliation History
We have a proud history of championing reconciliation. We launched our first Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) in 2007, and we launched an Elevate RAP in 2015.
Despite the challenging operating environment at the time, Qantas was proud to launch an interim Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) in January 2021.
Qantas is working with Reconciliation Australia on our next Reconciliation Action Plan.
For more information about the Qantas Reconciliation Action Plan, email the Community Team
For Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employment opportunities at Qantas, email Indigenous Programs
If you're an Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander business seeking to work with Qantas, email Procurement