Making a Difference: Resolutions passed by BPW Australia National Conference
In 2016, BPW North Lakes in Queensland, proposed a resolution to the BPWA National Conference that BPW Australia lobbies the Australian and state Governments for the removal of the GST from women’s sanitary products. Their resolution was adopted and in 2018, we are seeing the results of this lobbying. BPW hasn't been the only voice calling for change, but we are effective.
BPW Australia lobbied for many years for Australia to have a paid parental leave scheme, and our direct advocacy to decision-makers eventually prevailed. In 2015 the BPW Australia Leadership Summit resolved to advocate for superannuation to be included in PPL payments. This call has been supported by other women's organisations. However in 2018, when the UN Committee reviewing Australia's compliance with CEDAW questioned Australia’s continued failure to include superannuation in government PPL, the Government simply replied that there are no plans to extend PPL. More lobbying required!
The Commonwealth Office for Women advised that, despite their remit to review federal government policy from a gender perspective, recent federal budget cuts were not subject to a gender analysis. This needs to change, and the Office for Women needs to be properly funded and resourced to meet these obligations.