Page 18 - Week 01 - Tuesday, 13 February 2018
Madam Speaker, in my past statements on ministerial priorities I have spoken repeatedly about the government’s commitment to achieving gender equity. It is a challenge that needs to be taken on in every part of government, in private enterprise, in the community and in the home.
In 2018 the government, together with the Ministerial Advisory Council on Women, will get stuck into further implementation of the women’s plan. We will continue to reach out to the many champions for gender equity—both women and men—to push this movement forward and continue to show national leadership.
After two years of particular emphasis in the prevention of domestic and family violence and in the sport portfolio, the government will make further strides in these areas. The family safety hub will take shape, having been through an extensive co-design process, and will become a real organising point and a place for innovation among the amazing support services working in this field.
Through the Coordinator-General for Family Safety, we will also continue to work on a seamless government response to domestic and family violence and sexual assault. Some of the important gains which have been made have not been the most expensive initiatives but have enabled new partnerships and approaching things from a new angle. One example is the work of the Domestic Violence Crisis Service and Housing ACT working together to identify suitable properties for the room4change program, which is now established.
As we know, the key indicators around domestic and family violence are likely to stay very high as Australia comes to terms with the full extent of this problem, and the same goes for Canberra. What is really growing is our knowledge of some of the related factors and the controlling or abusive behaviours which play out in too many relationships. Insofar as it is possible, I will use the structure of the safer families program to report on these different factors and the government’s response to them. Again, I thank the Assembly for the cooperative way we have been able to come at our response to this issue and I look forward to this continuing.
In the sport portfolio, 2018 will see delivery of the numerous commitments the government made towards gender equity. Each of these was funded in the last budget and is now working together with ongoing policy commitments around elite team funding and board representation. These priorities represent another great example of where the community have embraced the government’s direction—in some cases they have raced ahead of us—to work together on getting things done.
One area where I will focus particular energy this year is on further improvements to sporting amenities, making them safe and inclusive for everyone. I will soon announce a number of grants all aimed at this outcome. At the national level, the ACT has been pushing for more than a year now on the need to agree on clear targets for growing participation and promoting gender equity in sport. This is an outcome I will continue to work towards with fellow ministers and sports administrators—not to rank states and territories in a competitive way but to show a shared commitment to using sport to drive greater equity in all our jurisdictions.