Release type: Joint Media Release

Date:

Consultation to improve workplace gender equality reporting

Ministers:

Senator the Hon Eric Abetz
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for Employment
Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Public Service
Senator for Tasmania
Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash
Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business

The Government has today announced the commencement of consultation on workplace gender equality reporting requirements.

Minister for Employment, Senator Eric Abetz, said consultation with stakeholders will identify opportunities to streamline reporting requirements to ensure that the information obtained will drive change and represent the best value for effort.

“We gave a commitment to engage with stakeholders because our priority is to ensure that gender reporting delivers real benefits in the workplace to employees and employers,” Senator Abetz said.

“It is important to get the balance right between getting meaningful information from employers that can help drive results in the workplace, and making sure it’s not a burden for businesses to provide it.”

“Employers with 100 employees or more will continue to be required to report annually against gender equality indicators now and in the future.”

“We particularly want to hear the views of employers who have recently reported to the Workplace Gender Equality Agency using the online system for the first time.”

The Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012 introduced ongoing reporting and compliance measures for businesses with over 100 employees, to assist employers build a long-term picture of how to improve gender equality in their workplace.

Any changes to the current reporting requirements will be announced before the next reporting period starts on 1 April 2015.

The Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Women, Senator Michaelia Cash, said the Government was committed to supporting gender equality and diversity in Australian workplaces.

“Evidence shows that in addition to the clear economic benefits of gender equality, organisations that have a diverse workforce attract and retain high performers,” Senator Cash said.

“It is important to ensure these reporting and compliance measures are collecting data that is effective, rather than just more data without consideration of whether it will achieve any real results.”

“The Government is committed to making a real difference in advancing gender equality through its comprehensive Paid Parental Leave Scheme, its review to make child care more flexible, affordable and accessible, and through more flexible working arrangements.”

Public submissions, including an option for employers to complete a short survey, will open on Thursday 15 May and close at 5pm, Thursday 31 July.

For more information and to submit a submission visit
http://www.employment.gov.au/genderreporting