By Gabriella Marcelline
Queensland has placed gender equality “front and centre” through a government’s new strategy, which focuses on women’s economic security, safety, and health across the state.
Minister for Women and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence Shannon Fentiman said it’s time to continue addressing the current inequality Queensland women face in economic and social environments.
“When we launched the Queensland Women’s Strategy 2016-21, we outlined our vision that the Queensland community respects women, embraces gender equality, and promotes and protects the rights, interests and wellbeing of women and girls,” Minister Fentiman said.
“It’s time to once again seek the views and experiences of women from communities right across our state to shape the government’s priorities now and into the future.”
Minister Fentiman also emphasised the impact that the pandemic has had on women’s wellbeing.
“COVID-19 has disproportionately impacted women’s social and economic security, and we know they have been more vulnerable to domestic, family and sexual violence during the pandemic.
“We need to ensure this strategy finds solutions to the ongoing impacts created from this pandemic as well as continuing to look at ways to eliminate harassment of women in the workplace and broader society, and addressing the gender pay gap.”
Minister Fentiman also highlighted the achievements the current women’s strategy has made in the last five years, including the promotion of women’s rights, leadership, and efforts made to end domestic and family violence in the Queensland community.
“Since the introduction of the current strategy, Queensland has led the nation, becoming the first state to legislate ten days’ paid DFV leave for Queensland Government employees,” Minister Fentiman said.
“In 2018, the Queensland Government passed historic laws so that Queensland women can now legally access termination of pregnancy services, removing it from the criminal code.
“And we made a commitment to achieve gender parity on Queensland Government Boards, which we achieved early in 2019. It shows what can be done with a commitment to change.”
An online survey will be open to the public until late September. The information gained through the survey will inform a new Queensland Women’s Strategy set to launch later in 2021.
For more information on the Queensland Women’s Strategy and ways to have your say, visit: www.qld.gov.au/qwsconsultation