The ACT Public Service has been recognised by the annual Prime Minister’s Veterans’ Employment Awards for its efforts in helping veterans transition to a meaningful career in government.
The 2020 awards ceremony received 129 nominations — the highest in its three-year history — with the ACT government taking home the Public Sector Excellence in Supporting Veteran Employment award.
The territory’s veterans’ employment strategy has been key to the recruitment, retention and support of veterans and their families, according to seniors and veterans minister Gordon Ramsay.
“Veterans are highly trained, with skills and capabilities that are an asset to the ACTPS,” he said.
“We have created a better understanding of veterans’ needs in the workplace and developed tools and resources to support them during their transition away from the defence force.
“Some of the work that has been undertaken so far includes building a veterans’ employment website, developing an employment register and initiating a mentor program.”
The mentor program has been a key initiative for building on employees’ professional skills and connecting them with networks and individuals across the ACTPS. When the program was launched in 2017, the ACTPS had just 35 members who identified as veterans. As at May 2020, the number sat at 189.
The program currently has 30 participants, including Cameron Naughton.
Naughton, who joined the ACTPS in 2015, said that while “making such a significant career shift was difficult”, the ACTPS was there to support him.
“The ACT Government workplace policy, management and assistance available through the mentor program has helped me a lot during my transition,” he said.
Ramsay thanked the Ministerial Advisory Council for Veterans, the ACTPS Veterans’ Executive Champions, and all the veterans and their families who have participated in or contributed to the government’s programs.
“Our achievement in supporting veterans and their families would not be possible without the ongoing support and advice from all of our stakeholders,” he said.