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Merlin Entertainments launches its Reconciliation Action Plan

  • Monday 7th November 2022
  • SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium, WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo, Madame Tussauds Sydney, Sydney Tower Eye, SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast, SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium, SEA LIFE Kelly Tarltons, Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventures, otway fly treetop adventures, Legoland Discovery Centre Melbourne

SEA LIFE Melbourne Bitja Artwork

The attraction operator commits to supporting the national reconciliation movement with its inaugural Reconciliation Action Plan

Attraction operator Merlin Entertainments has taken a significant step forward on its journey to ensure balance and representation from all cultures, genders and backgrounds by officially launching its Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP).

Merlin’s Australian division understands the importance and significance of the plan to its communities and teams and is committed to delivering the RAP’s actions.

SEA LIFE Melbourne RAP Launch

Merlin operates nine attractions in Australia including SEA LIFE Aquariums in Sydney, Melbourne and on the Sunshine Coast, Madame Tussauds Sydney, WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo, Sydney Tower Eye, LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Melbourne, Otway Fly Treetop Adventures and Illawarra Fly Treetop Adventures.

The RAP launch proceedings commenced with simultaneous events on Wurundjeri Country at SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium and Gubbi Gubbi Country at SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast, involving representatives from local first nations communities and Merlin team members. The events will soon be followed by an event on Gadigal Land at WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo.

SEA LIFE Melbourne RAP Launch Uncle Ringo Terrick Claire Burrell 3

An important feature of the launch was the unveiling of an artwork from Gunnai, Gunditjmara, Dhudhuroa and Yorta Yorta artist Bitja (Dixon Patten) of Bayila Creative. Bitja’s artwork represents people from Merlin and the community sitting, sharing and learning about Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander cultures. The artwork will be displayed in each of Merlin’s Australian attractions.

Ian Wood, Merlin’s Regional Director ANZ and RAP Champion, is honoured to be leading the charge and holding the overall business to account to ensure it is delivering meaningful actions and outcomes.

Illawarra Fly RAP Launch (20)

“Our RAP will help us on our journey of reconciliation as we establish strong relationships through our engagement and consultation with local Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander communities to learn about the importance of the Land, Sea and Country.”

“We believe this is an important step in creating a more inclusive and diverse workplace. We recognise the importance of reconciliation, and the impact businesses can have on achieving it – we all need to do our part, and this is us doing ours. We want to contribute and implement meaningful change,” said Ian Wood.

SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast Lyndon Davis, Gubbi Gubbi Dance, And Quinn Clarke

Ben Buchanan, Curator of SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium and WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo, said: “As someone with indigenous ancestry, I was only too proud and passionate to get involved with Merlin’s RAP journey to build relationships, trust and respect with our first nations people and the broader Australian community.”

“We hope that this will assist first nations people, in joining the Merlin team, to have business opportunities for indigenous owned and run businesses and in building ongoing relationships that see us succeed together,” concluded Ben Buchanan.

The Merlin team understands there is still a lot more work to be done but is proud that the reconciliation journey has formally begun.

SEA LIFE Sunshine Coast Ian Wood And Quinn Clarke