WaterNSW has launched its own Reconciliation Action Plan to continue working with with local Indigenous people to operate assets across the state.
WaterNSW now has a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) work group which consists of 10 Indigenous Australians, some of whom are not from the company itself.
Three WaterNSW employees are part of the group while seven of the members are Aboriginal community leaders and the final member is a non-Indigenous person who is an employee of the company.
The state-wide RAP was officially launched on Thursday morning with a ceremony being held at Dubbo's Wiradjuri Gardens to mark the special occasion.
The plan will now be at the centre of its corporate strategic plan, to ensure the company works better with and supports Indigenous communities with an increased understanding and recognition of Indigenous cultures, histories, knowledge and rights.
It features a range of reconciliation actions planned for the next 12 to 18 months.
The action plan will also help improve employment, economic and social outcomes for Indigenous people by providing job and training opportunities.
WaterNSW's Aboriginal engagement manager Russell Hill is one of the masterminds behind the RAP and said it had been a long time coming.
"It's been a long journey to get here but obviously we are here now and got a document now which gives us a pathway forward," he said.
"It gives us an opportunity to actually with the Aboriginal communities to build a pathway and work closely with them in regards to river systems but also our infrastructure."
Mr Hill said a lot of his own time had gone into getting the RAP where it needed to be to be.
"I kicked off 12 months ago and this is one of the corporate strategies that came on board so most of my time has been towards that," he said.
"We've worked really hard on getting the RAP delegates from the community and internal staff members, we've met online probably seven times and today was our first time together in person."
WaterNSW chief executive officer Andrew George said the RAP was a big step forward for the company as it look towards its future in rural and remote areas.
"The Reconciliation Action Plan commits us to the foundational elements to improve the cultural competency of WaterNSW, to improve the way we engage with Aboriginal communities and Aboriginal people across our operations," he said.
"It also looks at things we can be doing, points of pathways and setting those foundational elements.
"The way we engage and are doing projects with the support of the working group, doing that in culturally-appropriate ways."
WaterNSW operates more than 40 major dams across the state, and supplies water to more than 8 million people.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content:
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.