Christmas workplace diversity initiatives Herald Sun
(Image: Unsplash/erin mckenna)

Is it even Christmas if the Herald Sun hasn’t run a front-page story about a non-existent war on Christmas?

According to Australia’s most-read daily newspaper on Thursday, the Diversity Council of Australia (DCA) had told employers “not to mention Christmas” in their end-of-year communications.

“Workplaces are being urged to introduce ‘inclusive floating cultural holidays’, send ‘holiday greetings’ and hold ‘end-of-year holiday season’ events to ensure non-Christians are not discriminated against at Christmas time’,” the Hun reported.

There's more to Crikey than you think.

Get more and save 50%.

Subscribe now

The story was based on new workplace guidelines that are meant to help businesses be more inclusive of multi-faith workers.

It was also — according to the DCA — wrong.

The advisory council said in a statement published shortly after the article went to print, that it was “disappointed with the inaccurate headline and article that has appeared in the Herald Sun and other papers”.

“At no stage has DCA ever urged bosses not to mention Christmas.”

“We are simply saying that it’s worth remembering that many Australians do not celebrate Christmas religiously, either as followers of non-Christian religions, or as individuals with no religious affiliation, and there is a lot organisations can do to make them feel included at this time of year.”

DCA director Mariam Veiszadeh also took to Twitter to express her disappointment in the reporting.

“It’s the same old folks engaging in the same old tired misleading & deceptive media tricks. Very disappointing indeed. Let’s lift the standards,” Veiszadeh wrote.

There's more to Crikey than you think.

It’s more than a newsletter. It’s where readers expect more – fearless journalism from a truly independent perspective. We don’t pander to anyone’s party biases. We question everything, explore the uncomfortable and dig deeper.

And now you get more from your membership than ever before.

Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
Get more and save 50%