Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 01 Hansard (Tuesday, 13 February 2018) . . Page.. 93 ..
As Minister for Sport and Recreation, I have also set a requirement for peak sporting organisations funded by the ACT government to reach at least 40 per cent women’s representation over the next three years. And we have undertaken a considerable amount of work to get more women and girls participating in sport, through initiatives such as infrastructure upgrades and social networking hubs for women and girls to meet, share and collaborate online about sport and recreation.
The ACT government recognises and values our diverse community. It is important that this diversity is reflected in appointments to boards and committees, and in leadership roles, to ensure that the voices of women and people with diverse backgrounds are heard.
Work is currently underway to finalise the development of the ACT diversity register, which is designed to connect people interested in being on boards and committees with opportunities that arise in the ACT. The register will be open to all people but with a focus on women, people with a disability, people with culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and people that identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer. The register will supersede the ACT women’s register and is anticipated to be finished by early 2018.
The ACT government recognises that people from different backgrounds and with different experiences bring different perspectives and skills. All of these measures implemented by the ACT government show that the government takes seriously its responsibility to consider gender when developing legislation and policy.
Madam Speaker, I would like to close by noting the strong female representation and leadership that we have at the highest levels in the ACT. For the first time, a majority of colleagues in this place are women, and women lead the majority of our directorates. I look forward to working with all women across the ACT government as this focus on gender in policymaking continues to improve outcomes for women, men, boys, girls, transgender, intersex and gender-diverse Canberrans.
MS CODY (Murrumbidgee) (5.08): I thank Ms Le Couteur for raising this ongoing important matter. For far too long, indeed for decades, women in this country and this city were poorly represented. Women’s status in the community, their access to services and their rights as citizens suffered. But today we are lucky. Not only are we an Assembly with a majority of women members but it is easy for us to believe that the glass ceiling, as we hear it being referred to, is being smashed or at the very least cracked. I am not a fan of the expression “glass ceiling”. It is a term that women with resources and capacity talk about. This glass ceiling is one that only women with the means, the capacity and the support can break through. We must go further and be more inclusive.
We have seen this government prioritise better access to services, with an emphasis on community services and support for women to better engage in their community. One such initiative is the return to work program offered at the CIT Tuggeranong campus. This program supports women to return to work with the skills and