The contributions and achievements of Queensland women and girls following a challenging 2020 is being celebrated and recognised by the Palaszczuk Government on International Women’s Day today.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and Attorney-General and Minister for Women and the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence Shannon Fentiman called on the Queensland community to reflect on the achievements of women on this global day, while also acknowledging the need for continued action against gender inequality.
In 2021, IWD’s theme is Women in Leadership: achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world. The theme celebrates the tremendous efforts by women and girls around the world in shaping a more equal future.
The Premier said it had been an extraordinary year and because of that she would take the opportunity on International Women’s Day to acknowledge and applaud the incredible efforts of the Queensland women on the frontline steering us through this global pandemic.
“That includes leaders like Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young and Police Commissioner Katarina Carroll and Health Minister Yvette D’Ath who is overseeing our vaccine rollout and Minister Fentiman responsible for the women and domestic and family violence portfolios,” the Premier said.
“With around 90 per cent of Queensland Health professionals made up of women, I want to thank our doctors and nurses and all health professionals including those in admin and support roles who have worked tirelessly to help protect Queenslanders.
“It’s only fitting that it was COVID nurse Zoe Park who rolled up her sleep to become the first person to get the vaccine at Gold Coast University Hospital.
“To our aged care providers who have looked after our most vulnerable and our emergency services personnel like our police officers on our borders and ambulance officers transporting patients to hospitals, thank you.
“To our teachers of which more than 76 per cent are women, who adapted so well and so quickly to online learning when our schools closed. And to our volunteers in our Care Army who made sure those in the community who needed the help, got it. Thank you.
“Women have been on the frontline as our scientists and contact tracers, quarantine workers and cleaners, and running our small businesses, keeping our economy open so we could recover quicker.
“Thank you also to the women who worked from home and those keeping their families and communities together.
“Thank you for taking it all in your stride, stepping up and leading by example.
“COVID made us all step up and face new challenges and together we overcame whatever obstacles were thrown our way.
“I hope that our future is stronger and more resilient as a result.
“Happy International Women’s Day.”
Ms Fentiman said International Women’s Day gives Queenslanders the opportunity to recognise the achievements of women and girls on our community, but to also highlight their resilience during a year made difficult by the global pandemic.
“Our Government is committing to making change by putting women at the forefront of our economic recovery, because we know women were disproportionately impacted by COVID and their economic security was hit hard,” Ms Fentiman said.
“The Palaszczuk Government is supporting women through our Skilling Queenslanders for Work, Free TAFE and Free apprenticeships initiatives.
“And we will continue to fight for pay equity, and tackle discrimination and unfairness in our workplaces for women”
Ms Fentiman also highlighted the important work that continues in preventing domestic and family violence.
“The Palaszczuk Government has led the nation when it comes to tackling domestic and family violence. We implemented all 140 recommendations of the landmark Not Now; Not Ever report, but we know more can be done.
“We recently announced that we will establish an independent taskforce to consult on legislation to address coercive control, a significant risk factor for women.”
The Queensland Government continues to follow the framework for government, the private sector and the wider Queensland community to take action to achieve gender equality in the state.