Ten organisations, representing hundreds and thousands of women, have called on warring political leaders in the run-up to the Budget, and to an election, to put an end to entrenched bias against women and children.
“Election 2013, and the following Budget, saw promises made that were not kept, and policies never previously mentioned introduced which were heavy blows to women and children” said Dr Mary Crawford, President of the National Foundation for Australian Women.
“The organisations making this call to political leaders speak for a wide range of women, especially women in disadvantage.
“There are women in Pacific Island nations, depending on Australian aid to give birth to healthy babies, and to educate those children.
“There are women in Australian cities and country towns fleeing domestic violence with their children- they need access to supported affordable housing, to community legal services.
“There are mature women retiring with grossly inadequate retirement incomes, unable to afford rents in our towns and cities.
“There are women and children needing access to health care, to dental care, to affordable medicines.
“There are working women still unable to find affordable decent care after school and in school holidays for their children, women who are still facing the loss of weekend penalty rates if they work in retail and hospitality. There are teenage girls and women looking for work needing access to affordable technical training run by reputable training institutions. We now have mothers and children in Australia who are denied access to a parenting payment once their youngest child turns eight. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women are twice as likely to die as an outcome of family violence compared to other women.
“Our organisations know women, know the needs of women and their children. We plead on their behalf.
“Prime Minister, Leader of the Opposition, Leader of the Australian Greens. Now is the time to put an end to entrenched bias against women and children in this Budget, this election and public policies.”
The National Foundation for Australian Women will again produce an analysis of the impact of the Federal Budget on women and girls, Dr Crawford added.
For further information contact Viv Hardy on 0411 208 951 or (02) 9283 4113 or Mary Crawford, President National Foundation of Australian Women 0410 427 831
- National Foundation for Australian Women
- Rachel Bausor WIRE
- Carmen Hannaker Green Union of Australian Women
- Diann Rodgers-Healy Australian Centre for Leadership for Women
- Terese Edwards Council for the Single Mother and her Child
- Joanna Hayter International Women’s Development Agency
- Linda Simon Women in Adult and Vocational Education
- Janis Shaw Business and Professional Women Australia
- Melanie Fernandez Women’s Electoral Lobby
- Melba Marginson Victorian Immigrant and Refugee Women’s Coalition