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Multiculturalism Issues in Australia Essay

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Updated: Jan 20th, 2022

Does Multiculturalism Contribute to the Social and Political Life in Australia?

Multiculturalism as a socio-political phenomenon is an integral part of the life of the Australian population. The significant number of immigrants who came into the country over its history formed a diverse society with the features of different ethnicities. The collision of these ethnic groups has been presenting some significant issues for the social scientists’ discussion for many years. Although multiculturalism presents difficulties for immigrants’ integration and nation’s identification, it implements diversity to the society thus contributing to the national competitiveness and cultural richness of Australia.

There are many scholarly articles and books devoted to the issues of multiculturalism in Australia. The researches study the social, political, cultural and economic benefits and problems it imposes. When viewed from the socio-cultural perspective, multiculturalism imposes diminished tolerance toward the minorities and the efforts of the immigrants to fit “into dominant cultural norms” (Harris 1). The questions of identity, cultural belonging and safety in the conditions of the collision of different socio-cultural views lead to the complications in socialisation and integration of the immigrants, especially young people. According to Harris, the essential problem for such youth lies in their constant struggle to maintain “inert-ethnic engagement and cohesion” to adjust to the requirements of the national categories (3). In spite of the social and cultural difficulties young generations might face concerning multiculturalism, its positive contribution to the nation’s life manifestations prevails. This disadvantage presents a broad scope of directions for discussion on both scholarly and governmental levels with subsequent implementation of the practical actions.

The government authorities of Australia lead an active policy of celebrating and promoting diversity within the framework of multiculturalism as an inherent element of the national identity. At both federal and state levels, the funds are invested in various programs aimed at facilitating the inter-cultural communication and understanding (Maginn and Hamnett 120). The majority of the Australian population constitutes in the immigrants from different parts of the world who came to the country and became a part of its heritage. It is the basis for governmental programs and policies which target tolerance in multiculturalism (Maginn and Hamnett 120). Accordingly, the Australian legislation supports immigrants and establishes sufficient conditions for them to subsequently contribute to the well-being of the country in economic and cultural spheres.

Cultural and demographic diversity enforced by multiculturalism is a significant facilitator in Australian national policies. It has been used as an integral part of “national building” for more than 60 years (Collins 133). It is relevant to underline that the efforts of the government to promote multiculturalism at the economic, cultural, and social levels achieved successful results. The level of immigrant integration to the various spheres of life in Australia is sufficient to state that the government created a favourable environment for the implementation of multiculturalism in the national development policy (Collins 133). This success in solving the problems of inter-cultural collisions was achieved with the help of educational and legislative programs.

The uniqueness of Australian society lies in its capability to respect the rights of all the citizens regardless of the nationality or origin. Such an attitude was developed by the nation-wide implementation of policies utilising the core human rights ideas into the facilitation of immigrants’ integration. Such a positively-directed approach differs from the one European leaders introduce due to their reluctance to find effective governmental solutions to the problems related to multiculturalism (Ozdowski 110-111). The government’s introduction of the basis for mutual respect between the representatives of different ethnicities and the perspectives for national growth to the educational sphere contributed to the success of the Australian multiculturalism (Ozdowski 109). Such an approach made the subsequent developmental steps toward national competitiveness possible as well.

Cultural diversity as a result of immigration became an efficient contributor to the strategic course of the Australian socio-economic field. According to Ng and Metz, the policies utilized by the state and federal authorities enforced the attraction of talented people to the country that improves the level of country’s competitiveness on the global arena (253). Thus, having created a favourable political and social environment for ethnic minorities, the government provides high living standards and professional perspectives. The country opens its borders to high-class professionals capable of contributing to the Australian economic growth. The tolerance towards immigrant from the side of government enhances the trade opportunities employing natural communication between the nationalities.

In conclusion, despite minor socio-cultural difficulties related to multiculturalism the Australian society faced in the past, the governmental policies made it possible to convert cultural and demographic diversity into the national success. The state and federal authorities developed efficient legal and educational programs aimed at the promotion of and tolerance to ethnic minorities to support their integration into the national environment. The immigrants are motivated to come and stay in Australia due to the favourable conditions introduced. Such an approach contributed to the improvement of safety and living standards levels thus enhancing the economic growth of the country with a subsequent contribution to its global competitiveness.

Works Cited

Collins, Jock. “Multiculturalism and Immigrant Integration in Australia.” Canadian Ethnic Studies, vol. 45, no.3, 2013, pp. 133-149.

Harris, Anita. Young People and Everyday Multiculturalism. Routledge, 2013.

Maginn, Paul J., and Stephen Hamnett. “Multiculturalism and Metropolitan Australia: Demographic Change and Implications for Strategic Planning.” Built Environment, vol. 42, no. 1, 2016, pp. 120-144.

Ng, Eddy S., and Isabel Metz. “Multiculturalism as a Strategy for National Competitiveness: The Case for Canada and Australia.” Journal of Business Ethics, vol. 128, no. 2, 2014, pp. 253-266.

Ozdowski, Sev. “Australian Multiculturalism.The Roots of Its Success.” Promoting Changes in Times of Transition and Crisis: Reflection on Human Rights Education, 2013, pp. 109-135.

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