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Why women? Why now?

Why women?

Gender equality benefits us all.

Global studies show that women’s political leadership makes a difference, and women are leading the change. It advances the key pillars of our society, like health, education, and democracy. In Australia, we know women-led businesses are also more productive.

While women make up roughly half the population, and the workforce (50.2%), they represent only 38% of women on Victorian councils, with 14 councils having only one female councillor.

Representation matters. It benefits us all materially, and it paves the way for women who aspire to lead their communities in the future. But barriers – including the confidence gap, and the pay gap – remain, and they could get even bigger.

We have an ambitious goal – to achieve 50% representation. It is a goal that requires women (and men) to take action. In every community and at every level of government, women play crucial roles as leaders. Women know what it takes to make difficult decisions, because they are already doing this in every neighbourhood in Victoria.

This means that women have the skills, vision and motivation to be elected representatives. What they need is encouragement and support, to take on these formal roles of leadership on council.

Why now?

Victorians need unity and leadership more than ever. Across the state, people are looking to political leaders not only for advice and advocacy, but also for representation that reflects the diversity of their communities.

With climate change and COVID-19 disproportionately affecting women and children, across the globe and within our communities, we need more women to stand for election so their voices and concerns are heard, and met with confidence, direction, and inclusivity.

Women’s voices must be part of a post-pandemic recovery that addresses the disproportionate impacts on women.

The October 2020 Victorian council elections are a pivotal opportunity for diverse women to stand and represent their communities and values.

Now is the time to make right decisions about our future.

Learn more and nominate now.

Not ready to nominate, but know a woman who should? Then #TapHerOnTheShoulder and #AskHer. Your encouragement could help her to realise that she’s the right woman to stand. Your actions (and your vote) matter this year, more than ever. And don’t forget, you can always nominate yourself in the 2024 council elections.

Source: Local Women Leading Change – Your Campaign Toolkit, Victorian Local Governance Association (VLGA), 2020.

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