Australia makes new commitments internationally and at home to empower women and girls (updated)

In this anniversary year [of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action] and to progress the 2030 Agenda, Australia is making new commitments both internationally and at home to empower women and girls.

Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs has launched a new Gender Equality Fund. This Fund will accelerate support for gender equality in our overseas development program with a focus on women’s economic and leadership participation and addressing violence against women.

Australia will confront record levels of homicide of women, and domestic and family violence, committing new funds for frontline services, support for women from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds who are experiencing violence, and primary prevention initiatives to change the attitudes of young people towards violence against women and their children.

To increase women’s workforce participation, responding to G20 commitments of 2014, Australia is providing new financial literacy projects for women, improved assistance for child care and small business reforms that will deliver new opportunities for women in the workforce. [ Commitment statement ]

Developments since Australia’s commitment

Australia launched the Third Action Plan of the National Plan to Reduce Violence against Women and their Children (2010–2022) in October 2016, focusing on measures such as prevention and early intervention, keeping perpetrators accountable, and several others.

In September 2015, the Prime Minister announced a Women’s Safety Package (AUD 100 million), which provides practical and immediate action to keep women and their children safe. The Stop it at the Start (AUD 30 million) national prevention campaign was launched in April 2016 and aims to generate long-term cultural change.

Australia is also supporting women’s ability to participate in the workforce by investing in childcare and early learning, providing women with the skills and support they need to work in growth industries, investing in internships and post-school career advice to support women to work in STEM, and implementing reforms targeted towards closing the gender gap in retirement income and savings. [ Full update ]