On this International Women’s Day (IWD), 8 March 2022, the country’s largest union, the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF), is celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political contributions of women to successful and peaceful communities around the world, while calling for urgent implementation of safeguards and reform measures needed to remove the barriers that continue to prevent women’s full participation in society.
The ANMF is calling on governments to:
- Ensure equal rights for working women;
- Eradicate the gender pay and superannuation gap;
- Act on all 55 recommendations of the RESPECT@Work: Sexual Harassment National Inquiry Report (2020);
- Provide free, accessible childcare;
- Expand paid parental leave; and
- Embed respectful relationships in workplaces across Australia.
The ANMF is also calling for governments to finally recognise the true value of historically ‘feminised’ care sector work. Despite the enormous contribution of the largely female nursing, midwifery and aged care workforces to the health and wellbeing of all Australians, most particularly throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the work of nurses, midwives and aged care workers continues to be undervalued and unseen and their voices unheard.
“The extensive skills and knowledge required for this work remain largely invisible to governments and policy makers and continue to be taken for granted due to our society’s gender bias about care sector work being ‘women’s work’. We need to recognise the true value of this work and reward the skills it requires and the contribution it makes to the success of our societies,” ANMF Federal Secretary, Annie Butler, said today.
“In the lead-up to the Federal Election, we’re calling on the Morrison Government to introduce meaningful policies which ensure that women are safe and respected at work, that they have the same opportunities as men throughout their careers and in retirement, and that their work is valued as equally important to our communities as the work of male dominated sectors.
“The campaign theme for IWD this year is #BreaktheBias – which is exactly what the Morrison Government must do to ensure women’s full participation. The ANMF wishes all of our members and women right across the community, a happy International Women’s Day.”