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Equal Opportunity Commissioner's e-bulletin 9 December 2104

by Equal Opportunity Commission | Dec 09, 2014

CEOs for Gender Equity initiative launched

Allanah Lucas Commissioner for Equal Opportunity was pleased to have facilitated the CEO’s for Gender Equity Initiative and its launch. It is almost two years since the planning and work began with the previous Commissioner Yvonne Henderson. The eighteen CEO’s at the helm are leaders committed to progressing gender equity in Western Australia.

On the 2nd of December, after the official opening by Her Excellency, the Governor Kerry Sanderson, 130 CEOs and their guests heard Alan Cransberg, Chairman and managing director of ALCOA of Australia deliver the keynote address. He noted that in Australia, WA has the lowest number of females on boards and executive bodies and the biggest pay gap, and also that almost half 46%) of workplace complaints made to the EOC are related to gender inequality.

Alan informed the audience that domestic and family violence costs Australia some $13 billion each year, and that research from VicHealth found that “...the most significant factors influencing the likelihood of violence were support for gender inequality and rigid gender roles.” He linked this to the need for attitudinal and cultural change towards the role o women in our society.

 The CEOs for Gender Equity sub group chairs spoke on the three focus areas of education, workplace flexibility and women in leadership. Speakers included Chris Sutherland Managing Director, Programmed; Ms Jenni Hill, Partner, Norton Rose Fulbright; Chris Hall Chief Executive Officer MercyCare; and Irina Cattalini Chief Executive Officer, WA Council of Social Service Inc. The eighteen ‘CEOs for Gender Equity’ believe the initiative is the opportunity to develop and share practices to decrease the disparity for women from early childhood and throughout their lives.

 They gave each guest three questions to take back to their organisations. Their answers will be collated in the New Year, to further progress and act as the catalyst for more change towards gender equity. If you would like to know more please visit: CEOs for Gender Equity on the EOC website.


Filling the Pool: A report on gender disparity at CEO level

The Equal Opportunity Commission with the Department of Mines and Petroleum, and the Department of Local Government and Communities co-hosted a presentation by Dr Terrance Fitzsimmons from the University of Queensland on his research on gender disparity in CEO positions in Western Australia. The research covers: the causes; the impact; and the ways businesses can increase the number of female CEOs, and so increase their long-term prosperity. The event was organised for public sector organisations to hear firsthand the key findings of this report, and to take away the information and use it as a guide in their own organisations.

The research has been funded by: The Committee for Perth; Shell; Westpac; Worley Parsons and the Department of Local Government & Communities as Supporting Sponsors; and AICD and CEDA as Supporting Organisations. The Committee for Perth understands; that the gender pay gap in WA was the highest in Australia; that the number of women in key positions is less than in the Eastern States; and that there is a massive underutilisation of talent.

The influences on becoming a CEO are many and varied but the commonalities of the female CEOs in the study, and the contrasting commonalities of the male CEOs are surprising. The report explores and compares these and the influences starting from birth, that lead to women becoming CEOs. Attendees at the event left with ideas for action they could take to assist in redressing the imbalance.

To learn more go to Committee for Perth: Filling the Pool


 Give2Good Foundation

The establishment of the Give2Good Foundation was celebrated on the 4th of December and launched by the Her Excellency, Kerry Sanderson AO, Governor of Western Australia, together with the Honourable Michael Mischin MLC, Attorney General. Give2Good is a community foundation to be administered by the Public Trustee giving people the opportunity to give to charitable foundations over a long period. The founder is Dr Penny Flett and the trustee is Mr Brian Roche, the Public Trustee. For more information phone 1300 746 116 or see Give2Good

 Aboriginal Social Justice and Native Title Report

The 2014 Social Justice Report was released on November 27 by the Federal social Justice Commissioner Mick Gooda. It was endorsed by a coalition of Aboriginal, human rights and campaign organisations from across Australia. It includes the information that between 2000 and 2013, there was a 57% increase in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander imprisonment rate, and the women’s rate of increase is 73.7% since 2000. The report provides recommendations on approaches to decrease the number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in prisons and ways to create safer communities. It also promotes a justice reinvestment approach.

To read more go to: Social Justice and Native Title Report 2014

EOC Aboriginal Calendar Available

Students at Clontarf Aboriginal College submitted artwork for the Commissioner’s Equal Opportunity 2015 Aboriginal Calendar. The winner entry was Shaun Angeles other awards were given to Zyrak Smith, Juan Pickett, Elijah Howard. To receive your copy go to Contact us or see contact details below.

If you wish to receive the e-bulletin and special events notification by email, or for more information please contact us or call the EOC Public Affairs Officer on 92163911. If you do not wish to continue to receive this e-bulletin, email eoc@eoc.wa.gov.au  with UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject line.