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Qantas Celebrates NAIDOC Week

Sydney, 07 July 2008

Qantas today outlined its NAIDOC Week 2008 initiatives from 6-13 July to celebrate the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

The Chief Executive Officer of Qantas, Mr Geoff Dixon, said the NAIDOC Week activities promoted reconciliation consistent with the airline's commitment under its Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).

"Qantas endorses the vision of a nation which values Indigenous heritage, cultures and peoples. Our celebrations are aimed at advancing that vision to our customers and staff."

During NAIDOC Week:
- an Acknowledgement of Country announcement will be made by Qantas Cabin Crew on international flights arriving in Australia to show respect to the Traditional Owners of the local land area;
- two short Indigenous films - "My Brother Vinnie" and "Footy: The La Perouse Way" - will screen on domestic flights as part of Qantas' partnership with Screen Australia's Black Screen program;
- three acclaimed Indigenous films - "Ten Canoes", "Beneath Clouds" and "Rabbit Proof Fence" - will feature on international inflight entertainment;
- Indigenous artists will be flown to Canberra to perform at the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies' "NAIDOC on the Peninsula" concert;
- a reception and Indigenous film screening will be held in Sydney for Qantas staff;
- an information and tasting session with a bush tucker expert will be held for Qantas staff; and
- staff around Australia will utilise specially developed Event Kits to organise local NAIDOC week celebrations.

Qantas also sponsored the international tour of The Black Arm Band, a 28 piece ensemble performing contemporary Indigenous music in London last month, and will sponsor the tour of acclaimed Sydney Festival production by Big Hart of Ngapartji Ngapartji in South Australia and the Northern Territory in September and October 2008.

Mr Dixon also announced the commencement of a series of Indigenous Staff Forums, to be held around Australia each quarter, with the first in Cairns in mid August.

"The aim of the Indigenous Staff Forum is to give our Indigenous staff a regular opportunity to meet and to provide Qantas with feedback on the company's programs and policies," Mr Dixon said.

Qantas was one of the first Australian companies to lodge a Reconciliation Action Plan with Reconciliation Australia in November 2007. The airline's RAP has four objectives:
- to double Indigenous employment opportunities across the Qantas Group;
- to improve the involvement of, and support for, Indigenous staff;
- to assist Qantas staff to better appreciate Indigenous cultures and to promote cultural diversity within the company; and
- to encourage Qantas' partners and customers to actively support reconciliation and Indigenous issues.

The full Reconciliation Action Plan is available on qantas.com

Issued by Qantas Corporate Communication (3784)
Email: qantasmedia@qantas.com.au