IAG tackles Indigenous incarceration and climate change in latest Reconciliation Action Plan

IAG today released its new Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) with commitments to addressing Indigenous incarceration and climate change.

IAG, Australia’s largest general insurer, whose brands include NRMA Insurance, CGU and WFI, today released its new Stretch Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) with commitments to addressing Indigenous incarceration and climate change.

IAG Managing Director and CEO Nick Hawkins said: “IAG has a long and proud history of supporting reconciliation and today we are deepening our commitment to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples with the release of our fourth Reconciliation Action Plan.

“We know there are complex issues affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and the broader Australian community. Our new RAP will be guided by several key initiatives, including working with First Nations communities to address climate change and disaster resilience and to decrease Indigenous incarceration.”

The RAP outlines several initiatives relating to climate change and disaster mitigation, including purchasing carbon offsets from First Nations communities.

Our new RAP will be guided by several key initiatives, including working with First Nations communities to address climate change and disaster resilience and to decrease Indigenous incarceration.

Nick Hawkins

IAG Managing Director and CEO

Since FY20, IAG has increased the number of carbon credits it purchases from Indigenous offset projects. This includes sourcing over 7,000 Australian Carbon Credit Units (ACCUs) from the Northern Savanna Project which is run by Alka Bawar (Kalpowar) Aboriginal Corporation. As part of the new RAP, IAG will continue this program and support other First Nations projects.

IAG identified Indigenous incarceration as a focus area in its previous RAP and has since established a partnership with Just Reinvest NSW that involves community-led justice reinvestment initiatives in Mount Druitt (NSW).

One initiative is a pilot Learner Driver Program established in December 2021, run in partnership with Just Reinvest NSW and Australian Red Cross. Driving without a licence can be an issue which may lead to the incarceration. The Learner Driver Mentor Program aims to address this by giving young First Nations people access to free driving lessons and providing them with support to help them pass their Driver Knowledge Test and obtain the necessary identification documents to get a licence. Close to 40 Indigenous teenagers have since signed up to the program, with 9 of those securing their licences so far. 

“The incarceration rate for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples is one of the highest in the world. Not only is this a significant issue for Australia, but it also has insurance implications. The community response to the Learner Driver Program has been positive and we are already seeing some great results,” Mr Hawkins said.

The RAP also reaffirms IAG’s support of the Uluru Statement from the Heart. This recognises the importance of acknowledging historical truths and ensuring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people can have a voice on the issues that impact their communities.

These initiatives, among many others, show IAG continuing to invest in long-term and constructive partnerships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities, to effect substantive change for reconciliation.

Karen Mundine

Reconciliation Australia CEO

Reconciliation Australia CEO Karen Mundine said: “On behalf of Reconciliation Australia, I commend IAG on this Stretch RAP and its commitment to its ongoing reconciliation journey.

“These initiatives, among many others, show IAG continuing to invest in long-term and constructive partnerships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and communities, to effect substantive change for reconciliation.”

In addition to these opportunity areas, the Stretch RAP outlines key actions relating to Indigenous employment and professional development and supporting First Nations-led businesses through procurement.

IAG takes a First Nations-led approach to its RAP initiatives, ensuring that programs of work are informed through consultation with the community to ensure a greater chance of success.

This is IAG’s fourth RAP and covers the period from 2022-2025.