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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2006 Week 4 Hansard (3 May) . . Page.. 1170..


MR GENTLEMAN (continuing):

cent of all executive managers in ASX-listed companies and that the number of women board directors is only 8.6 per cent.

It is not just discrimination, systematic or blatant in the work force, that prohibits women's equality in our society, the most serious issue facing women of course is violence. Violence against women is one of the most crucial social mechanisms that deny women and girls the opportunity to live fulfilling lives. Living in fear is debilitating. The most recent statistical estimate of the annual total number of Australian victims of domestic violence was in the order of 408,100, of which 87 per cent were women. In 98 per cent of total cases, the perpetrators were male.

We know that these figures do not paint a full picture. The Australian Bureau of Statistics has estimated that less than 20 per cent of the violence against women is reported to the police. Research has established that one million women have experienced violence during a relationship, that is, 23 per cent of all women. Of this 23 per cent, 20 per cent of all women were pregnant when violence first occurred. The elimination of violence against women is a social issue, with multilayered approaches to both victim and perpetrator; it is not just a women's issue.

However, Mr Seselja's comments, hinting that women-specific programs and resources are at the expense of men, lack any understanding of women's issues. He fails to recognise the systematic disadvantage faced by women. He fails to recognise that, despite decades of advancement in wages and employment conditions, women still earn significantly less than men.

Unlike Mr Seselja, the ACT government is committed to creating a community where women are acknowledged and recognised for their valuable contributions. This commitment has been formalised in the ACT women's plan. The recent promotion of Minister Katy Gallagher to the position of Deputy Chief Minister in this government is just one example in reiterating that commitment.

National Australia Bank volunteer awards

MS PORTER (Ginninderra) (6.17): I inform members about a different kind of award, the wonderful award program that was launched nationally in April of this year, the National Australia Bank volunteer awards. These awards recognise and reward organisations for their coordination and management of volunteers.

You are all aware of the enormous success of the NRMA-Volunteering ACT volunteer of the year awards which recognise individual volunteers, but the NAB awards have a different focus as they are targeted at the organisational level. These are national awards and are supported by Volunteering Australia, the national peak body. Not-for-profit organisations, regardless of their size, are encouraged to nominate now. Nominations will close on Wednesday, 28 June 2006.

To show best practice in their management of volunteers, organisations need to be able to demonstrate their organisation's approach to working with their volunteer work force. They also need to be able to showcase a project or activity that happened in Australia in the past 12 months. There are seven award categories. I read these from the nomination form that I have here. These are: arts and culture, community services and development,


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