• 18 Sep 2020 11:54 AM | Jean Murray (Administrator)

    The case for gender-responsive budgeting is clear. 

    The Australia Institute has released modelling indicating that 70% of the proposed tax cuts will flow to men, while only 30% will flow to women. If Stage 2 of the tax cuts are brought forward, for every $1 of tax cut that women get, men will get $2.28. If Stages 2 and 3 of the tax cuts are brought forward, for every $1 of the tax cut that women get, men will get $2.19.

    Total employment in March and April fell 3.9% for men and 5.3% for women. Hours worked by men fell 7.5% while women’s hours fell 11.5%.  Recession job losses affected women more than men, and bringing forward these income tax cuts will further widen the effective gender pay gap.

    Matt Grudnoff, Senior Economist at The Australia Institute, reports that, despite women facing a bigger impact from the COVID-19 recession, Government stimulus has focussed heavily on male dominated industries such as construction. TAI research shows that income tax cuts mainly benefit high income earners which, in Australia, are overwhelmingly male. Giving tax cuts to the wealthy will have a very limited stimulatory effect on the broader economy, but it will significantly widen the economic gender divide. He proposes the Government could better target stimulus funds by investing in employment intensive industries like healthcare, aged care and education.  This will be more efficient than bringing forward the tax cuts, creating more jobs for every million dollars of stimulus. These industries also employ large numbers of Australian women who have been disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 recession.

  • 11 Sep 2020 10:07 AM | Jean Murray (Administrator)

    The opening of the 75th General Assembly of the United Nations is 11 September, and the UN anticipates an eventful month ahead filled with opportunity to bridge the gap between governments and global civil society’s vision for the “Future we want, the United Nations we need,” as articulated in the UN75 People's Declaration and Plan For Global Action: Humanity at a Crossroads, Global Solutions for Global Challenges.

    Civil society’s constructive voice needs to be heard and included by protecting the fundamental freedoms of assembly, association, and expression. Shrinking civic space worldwide, including at the United Nations itself, and the rise in oppression, intimidation, and threats against civil society must be reversed.

    We the people call upon the UN and its Member States, heads of state and government, civil society organisations and other stakeholders, elected representatives and all citizens to take bold action based on recognition of our shared destiny, and to work to create global institutions that reflect and respond to this reality.

    To date, there have been 773 endorsements, 382 organisations and 391 individuals. You can endorse the Declaration as an individual.

  • 07 Sep 2020 3:43 PM | Jean Murray (Administrator)

    KPMG’s report The Child Care Subsidy: options for increasing support for caregivers who want to work, reveals increasing the federal government’s childcare subsidy from 85% to 95% would boost GDP by up to $7.4B per year at a cost of $5.4B a year.

    Madeline Hislop reports in Women's Agenda that, over a 20-year period, a near fully funded childcare model could increase GDP by up to $10B through the cumulative benefit of parents’ increased productivity.  Such an increase to the childcare subsidy would incentivise parents to increase their participation in the paid workforce and help rebuild the Australian economy, as it enters its first recession since the 1990s.

    Under the current childcare subsidy, families have significant out of pockets costs which create a disincentive for secondary earners in a family, most commonly mothers, work more hours as it can leave families worse off when childcare costs are deducted. KPMG Chair Alison Kitchen reports that affordability of childcare is a key issue facing working parents.

  • 30 Aug 2020 12:12 PM | Jean Murray (Administrator)

    In honour of BPW International’s 90th anniversary, Dr Anne Hilty of BPW Hong Kong organised a webinar, "Leadership and the Future of BPW," which is accessible on youtube, together with its companion video.

    The webinar panel features BPW leaders from around the world presenting their vision for BPW International.  They include Past BPWI Presidents Elizabeth Benham (BPW USA) and Dr Yasmin Darwich (BPW Mexico), plus Neelima Basnet (BPW Nepal), Dr Maggie Kigozi (BPW Uganda), Thanaa Khasawneh (BPW Jordan), Valerie Lim (BPW Singapore), and Carmen Taheny (BPW Ireland).

    In the companion video, 24 additional BPW leaders, including BPW Australia President Jacqueline and BPW Western Australia President Carol, present their visions for the future of our organisation.  Be inspired by the depth and breadth of commitment and leadership we have across the world.

    What's YOUR vision?

  • 19 Aug 2020 9:13 PM | Angela Tomazos (Administrator)

    BPW Australia (the Australian Federation of Business and Professional Women) is marking Equal Pay Day 2020 by urging business leaders to change their habits and stay focused on equality as critical to economic recovery.

    “Gender equality and gender diversity at work is not just nice to have. Gender equity is a basic human right, but its achievement also brings socio-economic benefits to everyone. In a global pandemic , now more than ever we must not risk the gain’s women have made. Empowering women increases productivity and growth and the broader community thrives” Jacqueline Graham, BPW Australia President said.

    “The Workplace Gender Equality Agency has confirmed, with their recently released 2020 Gender Equity Insights Report in collaboration with Bankwest Curtin Economic Centre (BCEC), that more gender balanced leadership in an organisation delivers better company performance” Jacqueline said.

    Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) is an Australian Government statutory agency created by the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012. The Agency is charged with promoting and improving gender equality in the Australian Workplaces.

    This year, Equal Pay Day 2020 will be on 28th August and remains unchanged from 2019 and 2018. The national gender pay gap released by WGEA is 14% and there are 59 additional days from the end of the previous financial year that women must work, on average, to earn the same amount as men earnt that year.

    The impact of COVID-19 crisis has seen this year’s pay gap show a greater disparity between men and women. Every industry in Australia has a full time pay gap favouring full-time working men, even in female dominated industries such as health care and social assistance.

    “To drive economic recovery, we need gender balanced leadership and action for a strong and thriving Australia,” Jacqueline said. To find out more , go to www.wgea.gov.au/

  • 15 Aug 2020 11:52 AM | Jean Murray (Administrator)

    The pay gap hasn’t moved for 3 years: it is 14% again this year. It hasn’t risen despite the impact of COVID-19, but it hasn’t fallen either. This means women must work 59 additional days from the end of the previous financial year to earn the same pay as men. The WGEA reports the full-time average weekly earnings difference between women and men is $253.60.  There are many factors that influence the gender pay gap, but bias explains why it persists. Check the stats for your state and industry against the WGEA facts.

    in her 2020 report Measure for Measure, Emma Dawson, Executive Director of think tank Per Capita, reveals that women, particularly those from lower socioeconomic backgrounds, suffer from accumulated disadvantage. She argues there is a strong case for a national, bi-partisan commitment to measure, evaluate and take action to close the gender equality gap in Australia. She states in BroadAgenda that “the gender pay gap is worse than you think” because the real impact of the gender pay gap is felt, not among the wealthiest members of our professional class, but by women who have toiled in low-income jobs, often in the care economy, who see their retirement savings and assets eroded to the extent that they are forced to live in penury after a lifetime spent in the service of others.

  • 19 Jul 2020 12:44 PM | Jean Murray (Administrator)

    Many of our BPW clubs have been working with the Women's Empowerment Principles.  The WEPs were developed by UN Women and the UN Global Compactin 2010 and strongly promoted by BPW International. The WEPs are a set of 7 principles offering guidance to business on how to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment in the workplace, marketplace and community.

    The WEPs are a private sector resource during this time of upheaval and uncertainty. Businesses have both a stake in and a responsibility for gender equality and women’s empowerment. The COVID-19 pandemic is not just a health issue; it is a profound shock to our societies and economies.  Women are at the heart of care and response efforts – as front-line responders, health professionals, community volunteers, scientists and childcare and aged care professionals.

    In addition to complying with local and national COVID-related policies and mandates, including through the WEPs framework, companies should consider the 3 cross-cutting priorities laid out by the UN:

    1. Ensure women’s equal representation in all COVID-19 response planning and decision-making

    2. Drive transformative change for equality by addressing issues of paid and unpaid care

    3. Target women and girls in all efforts to address the socio-economic impact of COVID-19.

    They aim to ensure that no-one is left behind during or after the COVID-19 crisis.

  • 12 Jul 2020 3:32 PM | Jean Murray (Administrator)

    Per Capita undertakes research and develops policy recommendations with an overarching focus of fighting inequality in Australia. After rigorous peer review, their proposals are communicated widely, both in the public domain and through their network of senior government and industry decision-makers. One of Per Capita’s focus areas is gender equality, and their latest report is a great resource document.   

    The report discusses pay equity in Australia and explains the limitations of the pay gap calculations – important information for BPWA’s upcoming Equal Pay Day campaign.  The summary is a useful resource for BPW Club discussions on pay equity.

    BPW Australia is joining Per Capita’s coalition of organisations calling for an Australian Gender Equality Dashboard. This tool, once fully developed, could provide an ‘at a glance’ gender data set to enable comparative analysis, and provide policy makers with the information to implement programs and services to close the gender equality gap in Australia.

  • 05 Jul 2020 3:27 PM | Jean Murray (Administrator)

    The Presidency of the Council of the European Union has just passed to Germany for the next 6 months, and Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel has a focus on gender equality.  She funded BPW Germany €2M to execute their Equal Pay Day campaign in 2010 and 2011, and this is now a BPW International campaign.

    The EU Gender Equality Strategy 2020-2025 delivers on the European Commission’s commitment to achieving a Union of Equality. The Strategy presents policy objectives and actions to make significant progress by 2025 towards a gender-equal Europe.

    The key objectives are ending gender-based violence; challenging gender stereotypes; closing gender gaps in the labour market; achieving equal participation across different sectors of the economy; addressing the gender pay and pension gaps; closing the gender care gap and achieving gender balance in decision-making and in politics. The Strategy pursues a dual approach of gender mainstreaming combined with targeted actions.

    The evaluation of the implementation of the EU equal pay directive 2006 highlights pay transparency as a critical requirement to achieving pay equity.  As one of the first deliverables of the Strategy, the Commission has proposed binding pay transparency measures by the end of 2020. This aligns with the BPW Australia resolution on pay transparency passed by the 2018 National Conference.

  • 27 Jun 2020 1:57 PM | Jean Murray (Administrator)

    BPW Australia is a founding member of the Australian Gender Equality Council, the national, non- profit peak body for gender equality in Australia dedicated to creating the same rights and opportunities for women with respect to pay, superannuation, the workplace and society. 

    In this free AGEC webinar, Lessons from Leaders, BPW members will hear from business leaders who will share their real-world insights and practical tips on how to become a champion of workplace gender equality in a post COVID-19 world. AGEC CEO Dr Terry Fitzsimmons, who members will recall speaking at the BPWA National Conference 2018, will share the findings of his 2020 report on leading practices in workplace gender equality. Terry will be joined by WGEA Director Libby Lyons and business leaders for a lively panel discussion moderated by Women and Leadership Australia Global Executive Director Suzi Finkelstein.

    Thursday, 2 July 2020 from 12:30 pm to 2:00 pm (AEST) Register here

BPW Australia Newsletter Archive

Past editions of BPW Australia's electronic newsletters can be viewed as a PDF - see below.

Current editions of the quarterly e-magazine Madesin can be accessed here.


2015 March
2015 February
2015 January


2014 December
2014 November
2014 October
2014 September
2014 August
2014 July
2014 June
2014 May
2014 April
2014 March
2014 February
2014 January


2013 December
2013 November
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