Australians are embracing much-welcome growth in women’s sport, with huge crowds at last weekend’s opening round of the inaugural AFL Women’s football season just the latest example.
The successful start to the AFLW comes following significant progress for women’s sport in Australia, including the establishment of the W-League in 2008, the introduction of the Women’s Big Bash League last summer and the landmark pay deal announced last year by Netball Australia.
Setting targets for women’s participation off the field will support even more sporting opportunities for women and girls across Australia.
Today, I co-sponsored a motion with Nick Xenophon Team Senator Kakoschke-Moore, calling on the Government to develop strategies to ensure that sporting organisations receiving federal funding meet a target of 40 per cent female board membership.
Labor has a long-standing commitment to supporting women in sport.
In Government, we invested in female athletes through the Australian Sports Commission; funded a Women in Sports media grant program and supported the appointment of more women to leadership positions on sports boards and governing bodies.
Labor supports positive policies to promote diversity by aiming to increase the representation of women on all Australian Government boards to 40 per cent.
We are serious about women’s participation on and off the field.
As Australians enjoy the growing number of sporting options for women, we should remember the outstanding leadership work done away from the spotlight by women in sporting organisations across the country.
Targets that address the existing gender imbalance in sports governance will provide more opportunities for women to contribute their knowledge, skills and abilities to Australian sport.