THE HON TANYA PLIBERSEK MP
DEPUTY LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION
SHADOW MINISTER FOR EDUCATION AND TRAINING
SHADOW MINISTER FOR WOMEN
MEMBER FOR SYDNEY
THE LIBERALS: FIVE YEARS OF POLICIES THAT DISADVANTAGE WOMEN
Revelations from a Senate Estimates hearing last night show that after five years of supporting policies that disadvantage women, the Liberals are still failing to take real action to achieve gender equality.
Here’s what we learnt last night:
- No analysis is being done on the impact of the Liberals’ Budget on women.
- The Office for Women didn’t know what the impact of the Liberals’ tax policy would be on women. Analysis from The Australia Institute shows that men will get twice the benefits of the Liberals’ proposed income tax cuts compared to women.
- The Liberals’ much talked about ‘women’s economic statement’ is still, in the Office for Women’s words, ‘in its extreme infancy.’
- The Minister for Women has repeatedly stated that the Liberals’ policy to allow rollover of unused concessional cap superannuation contributions ‘is particularly helpful for women.’ But the Office for Women was unable to provide any evidence that this is the case. The Grattan Institute has said that ‘the primary beneficiaries of these ‘catch up’ provisions are likely to be younger high-income earners, overwhelmingly men.’
- The current financial year is nearly over, but the Liberals still haven’t used funding set aside to support the National Women’s Alliances to work with disability advocacy groups and women with disability. A year has been wasted.
- More than two years after its release, work hasn’t begun on key commitments from Balancing the Future: The Australian Public Services Gender Equality Strategy including a review of the Maternity Services (Commonwealth Employees) Act 1973 to improve the flexibility and delivery of parental leave for public servants.
TUESDAY, 22 MAY 2018