BMS Australia completed their first year of work in 2022 on the company’s Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP), displaying their commitment to driving equitable advancement and outcomes for the country’s First Nations people. Employees participated in cultural training offered through Black Card, and leadership training with Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung, a cultural heritage Aboriginal corporation.
As a sign of respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, meetings of over 10 people are opened with a recitation recognizing the traditional owners of the land in which the meeting takes place.
The objectives planned for the first year, which were all successfully met, included fostering meaningful First Nation connections, a commitment to learning as a show of respect, identifying opportunities for creating shared value and establishing reconciliation governance and reporting. Progressing from the healing focus of last year, 2023 is all about moving beyond acknowledgements by generating momentum for institutional, structural, collaborative and cooperative reforms.
BMS Australia celebrated NAIDOC Week in 2022 – led by the National Aborigines and Islander Day Observance Committee – which provides an opportunity for all Australians to learn about First Nations cultures and histories and participate in celebrations of the oldest, continuous living cultures on earth. In honor of the event, employees were invited to engage through an e-coloring book, a First Nations Voices music playlist, movie and book recommendations, and Indigenous Australian recipes. The company will recognize the week again this year.
BMS may be one of the few pharma companies with this focus and intentionality about access and inclusion for one of the world’s oldest populations.