Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 03 Hansard (Wednesday, 21 March 2018) . . Page.. 836 ..
Emergency services—employment of women
MR STEEL: My question is to the Minister for Police and Emergency Services.
MR STEEL: What strategies does the government have in place to improve the number of women—
MR STEEL: in the emergency services?
Opposition members interjecting—
MADAM SPEAKER: Minister, did you hear the question?
Mr Gentleman: I missed half the question, Madam Speaker.
Mr Hanson: Sorry, Madam Speaker, Mr Rattenbury was interjecting, and I just ask that the minister respond.
MADAM SPEAKER: Next time I have to talk to you I might have to warn you, Mr Hanson. Please do not push it today. Mr Steel, your question for the minister, thank you.
MR STEEL: Thank you, Madam Speaker; I could not even hear myself speak. My question is to the Minister for Police and Emergency Services. What strategies does the government have in place to improve the number of women in the emergency services?
MR GENTLEMAN: I thank Mr Steel for this very important and, of course, timely question. Last week we celebrated International Women’s Day, an important event that reminds us of the significant contribution women make to our society. It is also a reminder of how much more we all need to do to lift women’s participation and achieve equality in a range of areas. I believe there is no job a woman cannot do. I also believe women should be paid the same as their male counterparts.
If we are to build a more equal city we need to lift the number of women in our emergency services. While women make up around 65 per cent of our public service, their representation is not to this figure in emergency services. My advice is that women make up around 18 per cent of employees and around 26 per cent of volunteers in our emergency services.
To lift the number of women in this area the government in 2015 launched the women in emergency services strategy. The strategy was developed in consultation with ESA embers and is helping to concentrate the actions of the ESA in improving and building a more diverse and inclusive workforce.