Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Women's safety is everyones issue!

Like many of you, I woke up to the news on Tuesday the 30th of March that another woman had been killed, her 18 year old daughter injured and her husband in custody.

Did you know that as of Jan this year we are losing 2 women a week to domestic violence?

Did you know that domestic violence is the key cause of homelessness for women and children? Many women however don’t leave due to fear and the inability to support themselves. 1 in 4 children bear witness to violence against their mothers and are often hurt simply trying to protect them.
Many of the women killed this year had DOV’s  against their husbands/partners and just as many were young innocent victims.

These women are our mothers, daughters, sisters, wives, girlfriends, friends and colleagues and they all deserve to live in safety, free from violence and abuse. 
On Friday the 8th of May, join me in the “Harcourts Walk a Mile in their shoes” and help raise awareness on the issue of domestic violence. Join the walk

We have partnered with White Ribbon and all funds raised will be donated towards their school’s program. If we can influence the next generation to make a different choice and understand that violence is simply not OK then we will have a long term impact on this issue.
This year we have Rosie Batty – 2015 Australian of the Year – who sadly lost her son Luke last year as our ambassador and walking with us on the day.

If you are unable to walk and would like to donate please click on this link.  Donate here
If you have items we can auction off at events to help raise money please email or contact me directly on 0403 271 676

This is no longer an issue any of us can ignore, when we are losing 2 women a week we are at crisis point, it is time to make women’s safety everyone’s issue. The more voices we have, the more likely we are to make a difference.
Join me and together let’s give voice to the women who no longer have one and make a statement that violence is simply not OK.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Not There!

Faces of women were erased from billboards and websites around the United States as part of an awareness campaign for International Woman's Day.
The campaign was called "not there" and was led by Hilary Clinton, Chelsea Clinton and Melinda Gates.
It was a simple concept, very clever and dramatic. Where you would normally see the picture of a model or an actor you saw nothing. It was a very powerful way to visually display the issue of gender equality and generate discussion.
It was also a great way to remind all of us that even though we have made great gains, which must be celebrated, we still have a long way to go.
In Australia we still have many issues to resolve, the pay gap, domestic violence, homelessness, less superannuation for women, reliance on government assistance upon retirement, lack of buying power across sectors such as real estate, bank loans, rental properties and the list goes on.
I constantly ask the question whenever I am asked to speak on this topic, if we are not equal than what are we?
Given the level of discussion being had across the globe why is that the issue of equality is not part of an ongoing global agenda?
The United Nations is now pushing for gender equality by 2030, that is only 15 years away.
Wow do we have some work to do and quickly.
As women thrive, so will humanity but if girls are held back, the whole world will feel the pain, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon warned the high-level opening of the United Nations body tasked with the promotion of gender quality and the empowerment of women.
In her UN speech, Hilary Clinton said that the issue of gender equality will remain the greatest unfinished business of the 21st Century.
IWD is an interesting day, it is a day of celebration of that there is no doubt, however are we disengaging men in the process? How many male global leaders came out on that day and made affirmative statements on what they were going to do to tackle the issue of inequality?
Frankly as a woman, who has experienced the many issues of inequality, I am over the speeches, what I am interested in is what are the key steps global leaders and businesses taking to meet the UN call of equality by 2030?
How are we engaging men, how are business ensuring a more balanced environment, how are ASX companies engaging more women on their boards, how are CEO's changing the mindset's and cultures of their organisations, how are governments working with groups and businesses?
I want to know, globally, which countries and businesses have gained headway into this issue, what did they do, what were the results, how can we duplicate initiatives into our businesses rather then re-invent.
How are we, at family level, ensuring that the next generation, our sons and daughters, understand the issues we are facing, the gains we are making, the legacy we are leaving them and the role they play from their teenage years onwards around this issue.
We have a lot of work to do over the next 15 years and if we are truly going to make a difference then everyone needs to be involved. Each one of us needs to start a ripple, leaving it to the next generation, acceptance, making statements such as "its not so bad" is no longer acceptable.
Male leaders, CEO's, Directors, fathers, husbands, brothers, friends must start to empower women in their lives for change to occur.
I am excited that we have leaders focused on deadlines, I am excited because I know what happens when we set deadlines, we may not meet it to a 100%, but we will get gains towards it. And any gain is better than none at all.
Lets hope that the "not there" campaign in 15 years, becomes part of history, where we remember a time where we fought the good fight and won and our children, grand children and future generations simply learn about inequality as part of their history lessons and never have to experience it.