Celebrating International Women’s Day

Empower a woman, empower a nation.

This week, UN Women National Committee Australia is hosting events around the country to celebrate International Women’s Day on March 8th.

The events held in capital cities around Australia will bring together over 8,000 people to celebrate the achievements of women and reflect on the progress we have made. The events will also provide a platform to generate discussion around the work that still needs to be done.

“When it comes to closing the gender gap, there has been progress in some areas, but there is still a long way to go. With the global goal of achieving gender equality by 2030, it is essential that we accelerate progress, and there’s no better time to start than now,” says Janelle Weissman, Executive Director of UN Women National Committee (NC) Australia.

Around the world today, women earn 24% less than men. Closer to home, in the Pacific, 63.1% of women work in vulnerable, low-paid or undervalued jobs. Just 23% of parliamentarians are women worldwide, with Pacific Island Countries and Territories holding the record for the world’s lowest levels of women in parliament, at 6.3%.

We know, when women are empowered economically, have the opportunity to lead in their communities and have a seat at the decision-making table, everyone benefits.

“Economic and political empowerment of women are integral to creating safe, resilient and prosperous communities. When women are represented in decision-making at all levels, policies reflect the needs of all facets of society. When women have unrestricted access to decent work, economies grow,” said Ms Weissman.

Funds raised at the events will go to support programs empowering women from Pakistan to the Pacific. This includes programs and policy work that focus on leadership – ensuring women are well-represented around decision-making tables, at every level, in every sector — and economic empowerment – providing women with education, vocational training, skill-building and jobs, to ensure secure financial futures to support themselves and their families.

Everyone can show their support for gender equality and women’s empowerment by wearing a purple ribbon this International Women’s Day. Purple ribbons are available to buy now at Esprit stores and online throughout the country.

Executive Director of UN Women NC Australia, Janelle Weissman is available for comment.