Rosie Batty and Natasha Stott Despoja launch Gender Equality Strategy

International Womens Day - Gender Equality Strategy.JPG

Mayor Sam Hearn and Cr Antonella Celi were joined by family violence crusaders Rosie Batty and Natasha Stott Despoja in launching the Mornington Peninsula Shire’s first Gender Equality Strategy.

Just 10 days after the historic passage of the Victorian Government’s Gender Equality Act, the Shire launched its Gender Equality Strategy 2020-2030 at a special International Women’s Day celebration at Mornington Racecourse on Monday.

More than 500 people attended the free public event to hear Natasha Stott Despoja AO and Rosie Batty AO speak about their inspiring stories of leadership and how improving gender equality will reduce violence against women and their children.

Mornington Peninsula resident Rosie Batty – whose tireless advocacy has contributed to significant policy reform and ultimately, the development of the Strategy – said it was an “incredibly moving event”.

“To be able to support the launch of a Gender Equality Strategy in my local area is extremely humbling and an emotional experience for me”.

“Attitudes to gender equality and gender roles have to change if we have any hope of tackling family violence.”

Natasha Stott Despoja AO is the founding Chairperson of Our Watch – the National Foundation to Prevent Violence Against Women and their Children. The Shire’s Gender Equality Strategy was based on the ‘Change the Story’ framework developed by Our Watch.

“It is amazing to see how far we’ve come in highlighting the gendered drivers of family violence,” she said.

“For an event like this to attract more than 500 people shows that as a society we are ready to tackle this complex and devastating issue.”

Mayor Sam Hearn said: “This is something that deeply affects all our lives, I encourage everyone to work together so all people across the Mornington Peninsula can live an inclusive, safe and respectful environment regardless of gender”.

Cr Antonella Celi, who chairs the Shire’s Health and Wellbeing Committee, said: “We are proud to launch the Shire’s first Gender Equality Strategy, which is based on the ‘Change the Story’ framework developed by Our Watch.

“The Shire’s Health and Wellbeing Committee are tasked with overseeing the outcomes of the strategy and we look forward to achieving many great outcomes throughout our community under the six key areas of focus that cover all aspects of life in our municipality.”

Overview of the Mornington Peninsula Shire’s Gender Equality Strategy 2020-2030

The strategy considers the key drivers of violence against women and identifies four actions to prevent violence:

1.Challenge condoning of violence against women

2.Promote Women’s independence and decision-making

3.Challenge gender stereotypes and roles

4.Strengthen positive, equal and respectful relationships

Using these four actions as a guide, six key settings of focus were developed that cover all aspects of life:

Education and training

Work and economic security

Health, safety and wellbeing

Leadership and representation

Sport and recreation, and

Media, arts and culture

Within each of these six areas are a range of strategies and actions have been developed to address the key drivers of violence against women and their children.

To read the strategy visit:

/Public Release. View in full here.