Today, Australian Catholic Superannuation & Retirement Fund formalises its commitment to strengthening the Fund’s relationships with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

The Fund’s Reflect Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) outlines key initiatives it will undertake over an 18-month period to improve the retirement outcomes of its Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander members. So far, the organisation has created a process that enables members from indigenous backgrounds to identify themselves if they choose to do so when they contact the Fund. This helps staff members to tailor the Fund’s financial solutions to the unique requirements of these members. 

Head of Client Services and executive sponsor of the Fund’s RAP, Sharnie Barabas, explained why the RAP was important to the Fund.

“The Financial Services Royal Commission found several barriers faced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples when it came to managing their super. These include the inability for indigenous people to meet superannuation preservation rules due to their lower life expectancies and the lack of culturally-appropriate information,” Ms Barabas said.

“By setting up a dedicated working group and through our collaboration with Reconciliation Australia to develop our RAP, we have taken the first of many steps in empowering our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander members to live their best possible retirement.”
Senior Fraud Manager, Leah Bennett, who is Australian Catholic Superannuation’s Indigenous Liaison Officer, said that staff members at all levels have been involved in delivering against the initiatives covered in the RAP.

“The Fund’s executives have been incredibly supportive in the implementation of our RAP. Our staff members have also been on board. They’ve attended cultural awareness training so that they can better assist our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander members with their superannuation needs,” said Ms Bennett, who is of Koori descent.

In the past year, Australian Catholic Superannuation has become a member of the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees’ (AIST) Indigenous Superannuation Working Group, which seeks to improve superannuation outcomes for indigenous people.

Visit our Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) page to find out more about our Reflect RAP and the work we are doing with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

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