Sunday, 2 August 2009

25th anniversary of the Sex Discrimination Act

25th ANNIVERSARY OF THE SEX DISCRIMINATION ACT Attorney-General, Robert McClelland, and Minister for the Status of Women, Tanya Plibersek, today welcomed the 25th Anniversary of the Sex Discrimination Act 1984 coming into force. The introduction of the Sex Discrimination Act in 1984 by the Hawke Labor Government was a significant step forward to eliminate discrimination and sexual harassment and promote greater equality in all aspects of the Australian community.

“The Sex Discrimination Act was an important step in introducing structural reforms to help promote and encourage a culture of opportunity for women in our community,” Mr McClelland said.

“The 25th anniversary of the Sex Discrimination Act provides all Australians with the opportunity to celebrate the progress made in advancing gender equality and the role of women in our society.

“Australia is a long-standing supporter and advocate of women's rights, being one of the first countries to grant women's suffrage and the first country where women could stand for election for national parliament.

“The anniversary also serves as a reminder of the challenges that lie ahead in ensuring women’s equal place in society.” Ms Plibersek said.

The Rudd Government has taken a number of steps in the last eighteen months to promote women including:
Announcement to introduce a Paid Parental Leave Scheme.
Accession to the Optional Protocol to the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women.
Development of the National Plan to Reduce Violence Against Women.

The Government has also established the National Human Rights Consultation to seek the Australian community’s views on the promotion and protection of human rights and responsibilities. The independent Committee undertook 66 community roundtables across Australia and received around 35,000 submissions. The Government looks forward to receiving the Committee’s report by 30 September 2009 about how to best protect and promote human rights into the future.

Source: Ministerial Media Release

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