Release type: Media Release


International Women’s Day 2016


Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash
Minister for Employment
Minister for Women
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Public Service
Senator for Western Australia

Today marks International Women’s Day, an opportunity to both shine a spotlight on the achievements of women around the world as well as ask what more can be done to move towards greater gender equality.

Minister for Women, Senator the Hon. Michaelia Cash said while Australia has a history of leading the way for women, we still have much work to do.

“Australia was the first country in the world to give women the right to sit in parliament and one of the first countries to give women the right to vote,” Minister Cash said.

“We have made great inroads into gender equality and consider ourselves as an egalitarian society, but the fact remains is we have inequality between the sexes that we have a responsibility to address.”

Delivering the International Women’s Day address to the National Press Club in Canberra today, Minister Cash said the government was focused on increasing women’s workforce participation and ensuring women are safe at home, safe on the streets and safe online.

“For the past seven years the Coalition Government has focused on delivering policies to address domestic violence - the national conversation around this issue has shifted and this is something we can all be proud of,” Minister Cash said.

“As the Minister for Women and Employment I am particularly excited about and focussed on the synergies between the two portfolios and the opportunities that exist to increase participation and financially empower women.”

“Policies such as reforming our tax and transfer system, strengthening childcare, improving workplace diversity and flexibility, and supporting more women to innovate, succeed as entrepreneurs and thrive in jobs of the future.”

Minister Cash also announced that the Government will commit to increasing the target to 50 per cent representation across all Australian Government boards, with a minimum of 40 per cent on each board.

“Our diversity target shows that we’re committed to women in leadership and we’re prepared to lead the way,” Minister Cash said.

“Gender equality is not only essential for Australia’s future prosperity, but it is about the kind of society we want for ourselves.”

For more information about International Women’s Day events visit