In his capacity as the Chairman of the Community Relations Commission For a multicultural New South Wales, Stepan Kerkyasharian AO has presented a number of speeches on topics relating to the mandate of the CRC.
Accessible via the list below by clicking on the icon on the right are the transcripts from a selection of these speeches along with transcripts of speeches given by Cardinal George Pell, the Catholic Archbishop of Sydney, and Imam Feisal, President of the American Sufi Muslim Association, at an interfaith gathering at St Mary's Cathedral on the 1st of April 2004.
Occasional Address from Dr Stepan Kerkyasharian, Chair of the Community Relations Commission, at the University of Western Sydney25 September 2013
It is a great honour for me to be with you on a day which is really your day.The achievement of a vision you had set for yourself and which you have obtained through hard work, determination and, in many cases through self sacrifice.
Each one of you has a story of hardship, or the occasional self doubt, but you persevered and here you are today.
You carry with you the aspirations of your family, your friends and those close to you who will now look at you with greater pride and admiration as you receive your degrees.
Welcoming address from Stepan Kerkyasharian, Chairman of the Commission, at the 23rd Annual National Multicultural Marketing Awards28 November 2012
Like many of you I keep coming to this event year after year since 1990 and every year I feel greater energy and excitement in the room.
Like many of you, I look forward to this ‘big night out’ as the Community Relations Commission’s report-back to the people on our leadership in multiculturalism over the past twelve months.
You see, these projects we hear about each year are a barometer of how well we are doing in raising the banner of cultural diversity and the rewards it brings to our society.
Welcoming address from Stepan Kerkyasharian, Chairman of the Commission, at the 22nd Annual National Multicultural Marketing Awards29 November 2011
It is a great privilege to stand up here after twenty one years and welcome you all to the 2011 National Multicultural Marketing Awards.
Welcoming address from Stepan Kerkyasharian, Chairman of the Commission, at the 20th Annual National Multicultural Marketing Awards2 November 2009
In welcoming the 440 guests to the 20th annual National Multicultural Marketing Awards, the Chair of the Commission, Stepan Kerkyasharian, recounted the history of the Awards and reflected on their ground-breaking nature 1990.
Multicultural Marketing is Smart Marketing26 August 2009
Having opened this conference for the past 11 years, I can say that this occasion is special in that I am welcoming delegates who, for the first time are attending this conference. I welcome and commend you for taking this positive step in learning and sharing your ideas on multicultural marketing. I am also of course very pleased to welcome back delegates who regularly attend this conference. Your quest to continuously harness your expertise strengthens the pillar of multiculturalism and makes Australia a truly lucky country.
Challenging Islamophobia: towards social justice and inclusion26 July 2009
The theme of this conference brings to surface the constant need to reinforce social cohesion, to promote harmony, and address isolation and marginalisation in our communities.
In recent years, both in Australia and globally, there have emerged a number of threats to social cohesion. In particular, Muslims are at risk of feeling threats to their inclusion and the term Islamophobia has increasingly found resonance in the last decade or so. It is easy to identify some of the reasons why the world feels so fractured, but more difficult to offer solutions.
Address by Dr Stepan Kerkyasharian AM, Australia Day Ambassador at the 2009 Australia Day Celebration held in Yass26 January 2009
Everyone of us has a role to play. Everyone of us is an ambassador for Australia, in our homes with our family, in our neighbourhoods and communities, in our towns and cities.
Address to the FECCA Congress in Hobart31 July 2007
In my view what is needed is an amendment to the Constitution of Australia. A simple clause to the following effect:- All Australians no matter of what ethnic, religious, race or cultural affiliation are equal before the law and are guaranteed the presumption of innocence until found guilty by a court of law.
Address at the inaugural Passover Interfaith Dinner28 March 2007
"Tonight I feel the spirit of unity of purpose; the irrepressible desire to live together in peace and harmony. What we all feel here tonight is that the sheer weight of goodwill reflected by this event and many others before should be bottled and dispersed throughout the community.
2004 Symposium7 July 2004
"It has been just over six months since the last Community Relations Symposium and I am pleased to see a mix of both familiar and new faces amongst the crowd."
Cardinal George Pell1 April 2004
"It is my pleasant duty to welcome you all to this interfaith gathering at St Mary's Cathedral. You are all welcome: Christians, Muslims, Jews, Buddhists and Hindus, those of uncertain faith and perhaps a few without faith. We are here to pray for continuing peace and mutual tolerance, especially in our own land of Australia."
Crime Prevention Through Social Support26 October 1998
"The Commission is doing a lot of work with Police on how Police are seen in the community. This affects the ability of Police to best respond to and prevent criminal behaviour. These areas include building a culturally diverse Police Service, looking at prejudice-related crimes, using interpreters and developing community relations."
Ethnicity and Crime under the Microscope2 November 1998
"We need to be cautious about linking ethnicity and crime in the one breath. Knowing little about it has not prevented certain groups from drawing conclusions at both ends of the spectrum. While some groups deny the social interplay between crime and ethnic background, others have gone to the extreme of blaming ethnicity for criminal behaviour. Neither view does justice to the reality that crime is a community problem and that the community needs to come up with sensitive and creative ways of addressing it."
Launch of How to Live Together by Charles Rojzman10th April 2000
"When I look through this book and see the headings and sub-headings it reads like a hand-book for a chair of an ethnic affairs commission or perhaps more appropriately for a chair of a community relations commission, which we expect to be later this year. I say this because there is a lot which is immediately familiar to me."
Imam Feisal1st April 2004
"We are here both as individuals and as representatives of our religious traditions. We must take advantage of this unusual breadth, a breadth not only of religion and geographical views of each other, but also of social vantage points. We have experienced the reality that there is a multiplicity of religious voices in the world, and have come to affirm, importantly, that common religious, moral and policy grounds can be found in an exchange among these voices."
Multiculturalism in Australia28 March 1998
"I emphasise here the fact that we are multicultural, and will remain so whether we want it or not and whether some like it or not and whether we use the M word or not."
Sydney University Graduation Ceremony8 June 2007
"I know that each of you graduates feel a sense of pride and gratification for your achievements which are being recognised today. In my case it is an honorary degree which recognises my lifes activities which as some of you may know, in the last 30 odd years, has been dedicated to the promotion of mutual understanding among people of different races and religions."
The Journalist and Islam Conference8 December 2006
"Media and consequently journalists have a key role to play in effecting a positive response and outcome to the questions I posed. At the very least, the Australian media must report on, must reflect on the reality of Islam within our society as the faith of a large number of fellow Australians. It cannot continue to ignore the positive aspects of a major section of our society."
Welcome to the Real World8 December 2006
"For many people, migrants in particular, the police will be the first contact they will have with our legal system. Police are also the first point of contact in many trying situations, like a car crash, the death of a relative, a missing child and so on. In tense and highly emotional situations like these, it is essential for the police to be aware of other peoples real worlds".