Written by Kali Goldstone, Senior Advisor, WFEA

 

Women for Election Australia (WFEA) has created a ‘Parliamentary Friends of Women for Election Australia’ for the 47th  Parliament of Australia.

WFEA will officially launch the Group in Canberra on Wednesday 1st September at Parliament House. All Ministers, Senators and their staff will be invited.

WFEA envisages that this Parliamentary Friends Group will support our political work to redress the gender imbalance in political representation in all tiers of government in Australia; from Councils to Canberra. Australia is currently ranked 50th worldwide, based on the percentage of women in the lower house of parliament.

There are 3 co-chairs:
  1. Senator Claire Chandler – Liberal Party of Australia
  2. Dr Anne Aly – Australian Labor Party
  3. Senator Sarah Hanson-Young – The Australian Greens
The other founding members include:
  1. Kristy McBain – Australian Labor Party
  2. Senator Lidia Thorpe – The Australian Greens
  3. Celia Hammond – Liberal Party of Australia
  4. Zali Steggall – Independent
  5. Senator Susan McDonald – The National Party
  6. Senator Deborah O’Neil – Australian Labor Party
  7. Dr Katie Allen – Liberal Party of Australia

We asked each of our founding members the same interview questions and each week we will release a new combination of video and written answers from one of our members via our WFEA Blog.

We asked them:

  1. How did your political journey start?

  2. What do you want to achieve by being a founding member of the Parliamentary Friends Group of Women for Election Australia?

  3. As a woman, what is the worst misogyny you have you faced in your career (be it political or otherwise)?

  4. What would you change for women who want to run for public office in Australia?

WFEA’s intent is that the group will bring together female and male champions, from across party lines and states, to strengthen trust and solidarity among female parliamentarians.

The aim of the group is to empower and provide capacity building for women in federal politics while promoting female representation in politics. This includes raising awareness on gender issues in political life and within the broader Australian public.

WFEA believes that the future of Australian democracy must be one in which gender equality forms a central part of our political system. We welcome the fact that the establishment of this group comes at a time when there’s intense public focus on the need to see more women and diverse voices in our Parliamentary chambers.