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VPS Pride: Governance

The Victorian Public Sector Pride Network is a peer-led network that champions workplace inclusion for LGBTIQ+ employees and their allies.

Terms of reference

  • The objectives of the Victorian Public Sector (VPS) Pride Network (the Network) are to:

    • build LGBTIQ+ and ally staff networks and support organisational human resources capability to embed LGBTIQ+ diversity in practice across the Victorian Public Sector
    • raise awareness about the specific challenges and experiences LGBTIQ+ staff have at work
    • promote inclusion to make the Victorian Public Sector a safe place for LGBTIQ+ staff to be who they are, and
    • connect LGBTIQ+ staff and allies through professional and social networking opportunities.
  • Victorian Public Sector

    Any reference to the Victorian Public Sector shall include all public service bodies and public entities, as described by the Victorian Public Sector Commission.

    VPS Pride Executive

    The VPS Pride Executive (the Executive) shall make decisions and take such actions as necessary to implement the resolutions of the VPS Pride Council (the Council) and shall manage the day-to-day affairs of the Network.

    Membership of the executive shall include chairperson, vice-chairperson, secretary, and portfolio leads for communications, events and inclusion, from within the Victorian Public Sector.

    VPS Pride Council

    The Council shall be the governing body of the Network and also operate as a community of practice to facilitate collaboration between departments/agencies and to share best practice. The Council shall meet four times a year.

    Membership shall include:

    • an executive member of each departmental/agency Pride Network, or employee representative where there is no Pride Network in that department/agency
    • a representative from Equality Branch in the Department of Families, Fairness and Housing
    • a representative from Workforce and Engagement Branch in the Victorian Public Sector Commission.

    Executive Sponsor

    The Commissioner for LGBTIQ+ communities shall act as executive sponsor and shall provide high level support and advice to the Network. This includes:

    • leading work to support the objectives of the Network within the Victorian Public Sector
    • meeting with representatives of the network quarterly.

Strategic objectives

    • coordinating events across the sector for diversity days with the aim to have a “host” network within a department for each day
    • logistical support for the annual VPS Pride Awards evening
    • coordinating social events by running our own or supporting departmental networks to run their own events
    • leadership of sector attendance at the annual Midsumma Pride March.
    • development and publication of the bi-monthly newsletter
    • monitor and update the Network’s website
    • monitor and update the Network’s Facebook group to include new content about events, initiatives and news relevant to the sector.
    • development and publication of the bi-monthly newsletter
    • monitor and update the Network’s website
    • monitor and update the Network’s Facebook group to include new content about events, initiatives and news relevant to the sector.

Role descriptions

  • Purpose

    The role of the chair is to facilitate the effective contribution of all members of the Network, and promote constructive relationships and with the Network’s stakeholders.

    The chair leads the Network in fulfilling its role, which is to:

    • raise awareness of the Pride Network in the VPS
    • act as steward on behalf of the Network’s members and ensure that the Network remains focused on its purpose
    • maintain effective relationships with key stakeholders
    • engage with other diversity Networks to embed intersectionality into the activities of the Network.

    The chair also leads the executive committee, which is made up of the chair, vice chairs, secretary and the portfolio leads. The executive committee facilitates business between meetings, and is responsible for securing any required funding for initiatives each year.

    Key accountabilities

    • leads the Network and enables efficient organisation and conduct of the Network's processes.
    • provides timely, relevant information to assist members to be effective and fully participate in activities
    • manages the business of the Network by chairing meetings, seeing that decisions are reached effectively, ensuring work is progressed and monitoring Network performance
    • represents and promotes the Network, e.g. speaking about the Network at meetings and other events
    • develops and maintains relationships with key stakeholders such as the Commissioner for LGBTIQ+ Communities, Department of Families, Fairness and Housing - Equality unit, Victorian Public Sector Commissioner, and executive sponsors
    • leads the executive committee in facilitating Network business between meetings
    • ensures the Network’s governance structures work effectively, and updates these as necessary
    • exits responsibly when stepping down as chair and/or from the Network by ensuring there is someone to take their place, and providing the incoming person with handover information to help them move into the role.

    Skills and experience

    • ability to manage a diverse team of representatives from different organisations across the VPS
    • confidence in working in a whole-of-government context
    • ability to think strategically
    • ability to represent the views and interests of the network in a wide variety of forums, both informal and formal (including public speaking)
    • knowledge of government processes, including around securing funding and authorisation
    • confidence in working flexibly and adapting to changing priorities and needs
    • ability to promote diversity and ensure all parts of LGBTIQ+ communities are involved in the network and decision-making
    • understanding of the network’s obligation to act in accordance with the VPS Code of Conduct, and what this means in practice for the network’s communications and activities
    • experience and knowledge of LGBTIQ+ communities and community priorities
    • ability to model inclusive behaviour and practice.
  • Purpose

    The role of the vice chair, trans and gender diverse is to support the chair in facilitating the effective contribution of all members of the Network and promoting constructive relationships within the Network and with the Network’s stakeholders.

    The vice chair supports the chair to lead the Network and ensures the voice of trans and gender diverse people are embedded into the activities of the Network.

    This role is reserved for a person with lived experience as a member of trans and gender diverse communities.

    The vice chairs are members of the executive committee, along with the secretary, portfolio leads and the chair. As part of the executive committee, the vice chairs assist to facilitate Network business between meetings, and to secure any required funding for initiatives each year.

    Key accountabilities

    • supports the chair in their duties
    • acts as chair when the chair is absent, including by chairing meetings
    • represents and promotes the Network where needed, e.g. speaking about the network at meetings and other events
    • develops and maintains relationships with key stakeholders
    • actively participates as part of the executive committee in facilitating Network business between meetings
    • leads the trans and gender diverse support group
    • exits responsibly when stepping down as a vice chair by ensuring there is someone to take their place, and providing the incoming person with handover information to help them move into the role.

    Skills and experience

    • lived experience as a member of trans and gender diverse communities.
    • confidence working in a whole-of-government context
    • ability to think strategically
    • ability to represent the views and interests of the network in a wide variety of forums
    • knowledge of government processes, including around securing funding and authorisation
    • confidence in working flexibly and adapting to changing priorities and needs
    • ability to promote diversity and ensure all parts of LGBTIQ+ communities are involved in the network and decision-making
    • understanding of the Network’s obligation to act in accordance with the VPS Code of Conduct, and what this means in practice for the network’s communications and activities
    • experience and knowledge of LGBTIQ+ communities and community priorities
    • ability to model inclusive behaviour and practice
  • Purpose

    The role of the vice chair, intersex is to support the chair in facilitating the effective contribution of all members of the Network and promoting constructive relationships and with the Network’s stakeholders.

    The vice chair supports the chair to lead the Network and ensures the voice of intersex people are embedded into the activities of the Network.

    This role is reserved for a person with an intersex variation.

    The vice chairs are members of the executive committee, along with the secretary portfolio leads and the chair. As part of the executive committee, the vice chairs assist to facilitate Network business between meetings, and to secure any required funding for initiatives each year.

    Key accountabilities

    • supports the chair in their duties
    • acts as chair when the chair is absent, including by chairing meetings
    • represents and promotes the Network where needed, e.g. speaking about the Network at meetings and other events
    • develops and maintains relationships with key stakeholders
    • actively participates as part of the executive committee in facilitating Network business between meetings
    • leads the intersex support group
    • exits responsibly when stepping down as a vice chair by ensuring there is someone to take their place, and providing the incoming person with handover information to help them move into the role.

    Skills and experience

    • lived experience as a person with an intersex variation
    • confidence working in a whole-of-government context
    • ability to think strategically
    • ability to represent the views and interests of the network in a wide variety of forums
    • knowledge of government processes, including around securing funding and authorisation
    • confidence in working flexibly and adapting to changing priorities and needs
    • ability to promote diversity and ensure all parts of LGBTIQ+ communities are involved in the network and decision-making
    • understanding of the network’s obligation to act in accordance with the VPS Code of Conduct, and what this means in practice for the network’s communications and activities
    • experience and knowledge of LGBTIQ+ communities and community priorities
    • ability to model inclusive behaviour and practice
  • Purpose

    The role of the vice chair, rainbow families is to support the chair in facilitating the effective contribution of all members of the Network, and promoting constructive relationships within the network and with the Network’s stakeholders.

    The vice chair supports the chair to lead the Network and ensures the voice of rainbow families are embedded into the activities of the Network.

    This role is reserved for a person with lived experience of rainbow families.

    The vice chairs are members of the executive committee, along with the secretary, portfolio leads and the chair. As part of the executive committee, the vice chairs assist to facilitate Network business between meetings, and to secure any required funding for initiatives each year.

    Key accountabilities

    • supports the chair in their duties
    • acts as chair when the chair is absent, including by chairing meetings
    • represents and promotes the Network where needed, e.g. speaking about the Network at meetings and other events
    • develops and maintains relationships with key stakeholders
    • actively participates as part of the executive committee in facilitating Network business between meetings
    • leads the rainbow families support group
    • exits responsibly when stepping down by ensuring there is someone to take their place, and providing the incoming person with handover information to help them move into the role.

    Skills and experience

    • lived experience of rainbow families
    • confidence working in a whole-of-government context
    • ability to think strategically
    • ability to represent the views and interests of the network in a wide variety of forums
    • knowledge of government processes, including around securing funding and authorisation
    • confidence in working flexibly and adapting to changing priorities and needs
    • ability to promote diversity and ensure all parts of LGBTIQ+ communities are involved in the network and decision-making
    • understanding of the Network’s obligation to act in accordance with the VPS Code of Conduct, and what this means in practice for the network’s communications and activities
    • experience and knowledge of LGBTIQ+ communities and community priorities
    • ability to model inclusive behaviour and practice
  • Purpose

    The role of the secretary is to support the chair in facilitating the effective contribution of all members of the Network and promoting constructive relationships within the network and with the network’s stakeholders.

    The secretary supports communication within the Network including record keeping, and managing the Network's email and collaboration spaces.

    The secretary is a member of the executive committee, along with the portfolio leads, vice chairs and the chair. As part of the executive committee, the secretary assist to facilitate Network business between meetings, and to secure any required funding for initiatives each year.

    Key accountabilities

    • represents and promotes the Network where needed, e.g. speaking about the network at meetings and other events
    • develops and maintains relationships with key stakeholders
    • actively participates as part of the executive committee in facilitating Network business between meetings
    • keeping of the Network's records including: recording attendance at meetings, recording and preserving the minutes of meetings, reporting as required to VPS bodies
    • managing the Network's email and collaboration spaces
    • performing other duties as usually pertain to the office of secretary
    • exits responsibly when stepping down by ensuring there is someone to take their place, and providing the incoming person with handover information to help them move into the role.

    Skills and experience

    • confidence working in a whole-of-government context
    • ability to think strategically
    • ability to represent the views and interests of the network in a wide variety of forums
    • knowledge of government processes, including around securing funding and authorisation
    • confidence in working flexibly and adapting to changing priorities and needs
    • ability to promote diversity and ensure all parts of LGBTIQ+ communities are involved in the network and decision-making
    • understanding of the network’s obligation to act in accordance with the VPS Code of Conduct, and what this means in practice for the network’s communications and activities
    • experience and knowledge of LGBTIQ+ communities and community priorities
    • ability to model inclusive behaviour and practice
  • Purpose

    The role of the portfolio lead, communications is to co-ordinate the activities of the Communications portfolio, and ensure that the portfolio delivers on its key objectives and core responsibilities to promote the VPS Pride Network across the Victorian Public Sector.

    The Communications portfolio lead is a member of the executive committee, along with the other portfolio leads, the vice chairs, and the chair. As part of the executive committee, the Communications portfolio lead assists in facilitating Network business between meetings, and in securing any required funding for initiatives each year.

    Key accountabilities

    • ensuring their portfolio delivers on its strategic objectives
    • ensuring other portfolios are kept up-to-date on their portfolio’s activities, to ensure initiatives are co-ordinated and avoid duplication
    • ensuring correspondence directed to the portfolio receives a timely response
    • monitoring deadlines for the portfolio’s activities and ensuring these are met
    • actively participating as part of the executive committee in facilitating Network business between meetings
    • exit responsibly when stepping down as a portfolio lead by ensuring there is someone to take their place, and providing the incoming person with handover information to help them move into the role.

    Skills and experience

    • ability to coordinate work of a diverse team of representatives from different organisations
    • confidence working in a whole-of-government context
    • ability to think strategically
    • ability to represent the views and interests of the network in a wide variety of forums
    • confidence in working flexibly and adapting to changing priorities and needs
    • ability to promote diversity and ensure all parts of LGBTIQ+ communities are involved in the network and decision-making
    • understanding of the network’s obligation to act in accordance with the VPS Code of Conduct, and what this means in practice for the network’s communications and activities
    • experience and knowledge of LGBTIQ+ communities and community priorities
    • ability to model inclusive behaviour and practice.
  • Purpose

    The role of the Events portfolio lead is to co-ordinate the activities of the Events portfolio, and ensure that the portfolio delivers on its key objectives and core responsibilities to prepare and run events for VPS Pride Network members and their allies.

    The Events portfolio lead is a member of the executive committee, along with the other portfolio leads, the vice chairs and the chair. As part of the executive committee, the Events portfolio lead assists in facilitating Network business between meetings, and in securing any required funding for initiatives each year.

    Key accountabilities

    • ensuring their portfolio delivers on its strategic objectives
    • ensuring other portfolios are kept up-to-date on their portfolio’s activities, to ensure initiatives are co-ordinated and avoid duplication
    • ensuring correspondence directed to the portfolio receives a timely response
    • monitoring deadlines for the portfolio’s activities and ensuring these are met
    • actively participating as part of the executive committee in facilitating Network business between meetings
    • exit responsibly when stepping down as a portfolio lead by ensuring there is someone to take their place, and providing the incoming person with handover information to help them move into the role.

    Skills and experience

    • ability to coordinate work of a diverse team of representatives from different organisations
    • confidence working in a whole-of-government context
    • ability to think strategically
    • ability to represent the views and interests of the network in a wide variety of forums
    • confidence in working flexibly and adapting to changing priorities and needs
    • ability to promote diversity and ensure all parts of LGBTIQ+ communities are involved in the network and decision-making
    • understanding of the network’s obligation to act in accordance with the VPS Code of Conduct, and what this means in practice for the network’s communications and activities
    • experience and knowledge of LGBTIQ+ communities and community priorities
    • ability to model inclusive behaviour and practice.
  • Purpose

    The role of the portfolio lead, inclusion is to co-ordinate the activities of the Inclusion portfolio, and ensure that the portfolio delivers on its key objectives and core responsibilities to encourage inclusion of LGBTIQ+ people within the workplace and provide information resources of relevance to LGBTIQ+ people.

    The portfolio lead, inclusion is a member of the executive committee, along with the other portfolio leads, the vice chairs and the chair. As part of the executive committee, the Inclusion portfolio lead assists in facilitating Network business between meetings, and in securing any required funding for initiatives each year.

    Key accountabilities

    • ensuring their portfolio delivers their strategic objectives
    • ensuring other portfolios are kept up-to-date on their portfolio’s activities, to ensure initiatives are co-ordinated and avoid duplication
    • ensuring correspondence directed to the portfolio receives a timely response
    • monitoring deadlines for the portfolio’s activities and ensuring these are met
    • actively participating as part of the executive committee in facilitating Network business  between meetings
    • exit responsibly when stepping down as a portfolio lead by ensuring there is someone to take their place, and providing the incoming person with handover information to help them move into the role

    Skills and experience

    • ability to coordinate work of a diverse team of representatives from different organisations
    • confidence working in a whole-of-government context
    • ability to think strategically
    • ability to represent the views and interests of the network in a wide variety of forums
    • confidence in working flexibly and adapting to changing priorities and needs
    • ability to promote diversity and ensure all parts of LGBTIQ+ communities are involved in the network and decision-making
    • understanding of the network’s obligation to act in accordance with the VPS Code of Conduct, and what this means in practice for the network’s communications and activities
    • experience and knowledge of LGBTIQ+ communities and community priorities
    • ability to model inclusive behaviour and practice.

Statement of purpose

  • In late December 2015 the Victorian Secretaries Board endorsed and encouraged the creation of departmental Pride Networks across Victorian Government, attendance of senior executives at Pride events and support of Victorian public service (VPS) staff to participate in network activities. This was in an effort to better support lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and gender diverse, intersex, and queer (LGBTIQ+) staff in the VPS. Alongside this they also endorsed the creation of 3 Victorian Public Sector groups to support collaboration between departments/agencies; the Victorian Public Sector Pride Network (VPS Pride Network), the LGBTIQ+ Inclusion in the Public Sector (LIPS) Network for Human Resources staff (now the VPS Diversity and Inclusion community of practice), and the LGBTIQ+ Executive Sponsors group.

  • The VPS Pride Network (the Network) is a peer-led network created to connect and support lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and gender diverse, intersex, and queer and questioning (LGBTIQ+) employees and their allies across the Victorian Public Sector. The Network works to connect Departmental Pride Networks and Pride representatives to assist their work to promote understanding of issues faced by LGBTIQ+ staff in the workplace and contribute to Victorian Public Sector being a safe and inclusive work environment. We encourage an LGBTIQ+ inclusive culture, so that we can promote all parts of the Victorian Public Sector as an employer of choice, decision-maker and service provider for LGBTIQ+ Victorians.

  • The following principles inform the Network’s governance structure:

    • the Network is voluntary and staff-led
    • the Network demonstrates public sector values in governance arrangements, decision making processes and stakeholder engagement
    • the Network ensures clarity of roles and responsibilities
    • the Network promotes relationships that feature trust, open communication, robustness, accountability and inclusion
    • the Network promotes effective stakeholder engagement
    • clarity and transparency about accountability arrangements
    • acknowledges and balances the complimentary role of the Network and work of Departments.

Reviewed 11 May 2021

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