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Home > News > 2017 > February > Empower a Woman, Empower a Nation: IWD 2017

Empower a Woman, Empower a Nation: IWD 2017

Topics : Equity

women_web_qual.pngInternational Women’s Day is held annually on 8 March — a day that has long been observed as an opportunity for asserting equality for women’s social, political and working rights. 

On Tuesday, 8 March 2017 Chapters are encouraged to demonstrate their support for this year’s theme of Empower a Woman, Empower a Nation.

History of IWD

The first International Women’s Day rallies were held in March 1911, initiating what would become a world-wide movement to champion the cause of equality for women. In Australia, the first IWD rally was held at the Sydney Domain in 1928. 

Empower a Woman, Empower a Nation

Gender inequality remains one of the greatest barriers to women’s empowerment and sustainable development across the world. Women are disproportionately affected by poverty, discrimination and exploitation because of barriers to education and employment and often end up in insecure, low-wage jobs. 

While the percentage of women represented in parliaments around the world has doubled in the last twenty years, today, only 23% of all national parliamentarians are women, with just 6.3% female representation in the Pacific region. 

In 2017, our union is doing its part to increase the profile of issues and problems that affect women in their domestic and professional lives, including committing to a specific industrial and professional issues work plan that was developed out of our Women’s Conference held in 2016.

The key elements arising from this work plan that will form the basis of our union’s commitment to improving the working lives of our members are:

Policy: Development of position statements and industrial provisions that support greater equity.

Advocacy:  Public support or recommendation for particular causes or policies.

Claims on employers:  Pursuit of provisions and clauses that enhance working conditions of all workers, and women in particular.

Internal support: Programs and actions to support women members to take up positions of leadership and influence within their own workplaces and, where applicable, the union movement more generally.

If you are interested in learning more about our women’s work plan, consider becoming a part of our union’s equity committee.

Chapter action

As part of our 2017 International Women’s Day celebrations, Chapters are asked to support a collective culture in school workplaces by organising Chapter activities such as:

  • hold a celebratory IWD Morning Tea on Wednesday 8 March 2017;
  • provide a photo of Chapter celebrations for inclusion in the Independent Voice and our union’s digital communications including social media (please email these to communications@qieu.asn.au
  • urge your colleagues to join us (or to renew their union membership);
  • Join our union’s Equity Committee. (email your interest to briefing@qieu.asn.au).  

Happy International Women’s Day!

For more on IWD 2017, click here.