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HREOC media release: Setting the agenda for equality starts now

Commission Commission – General

26 November 2007

Setting the agenda for equality starts now

Australians are urged to tell the new federal Sex Discrimination Commissioner Elizabeth Broderick how to build an even fairer Australian society during a national ‘Listening Tour’ she starts today.

Kicking off in South Australia, Commissioner Broderick said the ‘Listening Tour’ was a unique opportunity for people to help build a plan for a more equal society.

"I am keen to listen to views from a diverse cross-section of the Australian community and I will be meeting with a broad range of business, community and employee groups whose input will inform the next five years of my term as Commissioner,” she said.

“There are a number of themes that I am keen to discuss, for example, how can we achieve real economic independence for women?

"How can we best support women and men to balance their work and family lives? And, importantly, how we can build an Australian society free from discrimination, harassment and violence?"

The ‘Listening Tour’ also includes a companion virtual tour, which features an interactive website including a blog, case studies and videos. There will also be a regular diary entry from the Commissioner on her findings as the tour progresses, which will be an invaluable asset for those who can’t get to a consultation, those who simply want to hear what she is finding out and for journalists keen to plot the tour. The ‘Listening Tour’ can be found online at www.humanrights.gov.au/listeningtour/

South Australian State Director for the Committee for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA), Hamilton Calder, welcomed the opportunity to support Commissioner Broderick’s ‘Listening Tour’ of South Australia.

“Our members represent leaders across business, government, academia and the broader community, who recognise the importance of ensuring fair and equitable work environments to deliver sustainable economic development in Australia,” Mr Calder said.

That’s why we applaud Commissioner Broderick’s initiative and encourage South Australians to take up this important opportunity to have their voices heard.”

An audio file of this media release featuring broadcast quality quotes from Commissioner Broderick can also be downloaded direct from the HREOC website at http://www.humanrights.gov.au/about/media/audio_grab/071126_liz.mp3

Media contact: Louise McDermott (02) 9284 9851 or 0419 258 597