Tag Archives: Australian education

Girls, politics and boys’ clubs: ‘When women get organized, watch out’ | Australian News | Instant News

TShe insists feminist and writer Jane Caro. One Q&A spectator, Sophie, was contemplating a path to politics but expressed some doubts because of “misogynistic comments and issues … surrounding women in parliament”.

Caro didn’t mince words: “Sophie, you have to get into politics. Sorry, you have no choice here. You must. Because the only way we’re going to change this is by having more women in parliament … The reason men get away with this behavior … is because it’s a men’s club and we don’t have enough women in power to make decisions and change this culture . “

His statement was rewarded with the loudest applause of the night. It came from behind Four Corners exposure from the previous week, Inside the Canberra Bubble, which charged senior government men with bad behavior while women were paying the price. A surge of anger is in Caro’s voice, and it’s happening elsewhere: on social media, in media commentary and at work, as women are once again turning gender inequality issues down the corridors of power.

“Every time one of these stories broke, the traffic to our website spiked drastically,” he said Women for Election Australia’s chief executive officer, Licia Heath.

Heath, who ran as an independent in the 2018 Wentworth election, said he had seen a change in taste among women for public office: “There is a tipping point and I believe the #MeToo movement and the bushfires have a part in it. The women moved when they realized that no one had come to save them. And women think, ‘I have to do really well.’ “

Women for Election Australia is one of many organizations across the country that conducts courses for women that essentially mark the road to politics, at all levels of government.

A former mayor and board member and now coach of board members, Ruth McGowan, is one of the women on the front lines of a community pushing for more women, and has written Get Elected, which aims to get more women and a variety of candidates into politics. at the local, state and federal levels. level.

McGowan said she was encouraged by her own experiences on the board and as a manager for her sisters Cathy McGowan’s historic campaign to win an Indi federal seat in 2013: “When I was first elected… I was standing because of an all-male board and I wanted to be the change I wanted to see. For my second term, I encouraged more women to run, so instead of being one in nine we were four women out of nine. I can see the power in encouraging and supporting more women to run. “

He said groups like The lady in Gippsland is being set up to work towards gender equality in government, focusing on community issues and training candidates: “When women are organized, be careful. We are at a tipping point where women say it is our time. We are inspired by international leaders in this field, we are inspired by Kamala Harris and we are inspired by Jacinda Ardern. “

McGowan likes to challenge the many cliches and tropes around why women don’t run for election: “The whole narrative about imposter syndrome is bullshit. How many women in Australia play netball? This is the most popular sport in Australia. Don’t tell me that eight year old in court is not about victory, power and ambition. I don’t believe that women are not naturally competitive. Who has been on the P&F committee at school?

“I think we have a chance for true equality when women are as mediocre as men. Why do we suddenly expect women to be saints? “

McGowan works with many organizations that support women getting selected and says their courses are consistently overloaded by customers. The Women for Election Australia Equip Course is run nationally online and is partially funded by the New South Wales government in an effort to correct the state’s poor record on local government gender diversity (according to McGowan, the the worst in Australia, amounting to 29.5%). In Western Australia He ran The program takes its first “Campaign School” intake this year. That Victorian Local Government Association is kick a goal with Local Women Lead Change Program: Victoria leads Australia in gender diversity in local government, with 43.8% of local government positions filled by women in October’s elections.

The university, too, is working in this area with the Pathways to Politics Program for Women, which starts in University of Melbourne in 2016, expanded to Queensland University of Technology this year, and the University of New South Wales in 2021.

Especially in these programs, the emphasis is on women who support women to get elected. Entrepreneur, philanthropist and Reserve Bank board member Carol Schwartz – who instigated the Pathways program – was pushed into action seven years ago when Tony Abbott’s cabinet included only one woman, Bronwyn Bishop.

Philanthropist Carol Schwartz: ‘I firmly believe that women are capable of creating a different environment in which decisions are made.’ Photo: Jarrod Barnes

“All the data shows that when you have more diversity, and gender diversity in particular, you get much better results,” he said.

“I am eager to see a change in our political institutions where women stand side by side with men, share power and decision-making, so that we as Australian citizens can have reasonable expectations of the best outcome for decision making. process.”

Research by the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership shows gender-balanced parliaments create more equal and caring societies, with women prioritizing issues such as health care, welfare and education. But Australia’s ranking 48th in the world for parliamentary gender diversity. Only 36% of Australian parliamentarians are women, although women make up 51% of the population.

Through his family’s philanthropy Trawalla Foundation, Schwartz is working with the University of Melbourne to adapt the Kennedy School From Harvard Square to the Oval Office program, create pathways.

In many cases, older boy networks have paved the way for boys into politics. Through the Pathways program, Schwartz believes women make very important connections: “I know from the previous group that very strong bonds are created through courses … They know they can reach out if there is a problem and they can solve it.”

Schwartz confessed “little to Pollyanna” about hoping the alumni network would change the mood in the federal parliament. “I firmly believe that women are capable of creating a different environment in which decisions are made. Currently we are still tied to institutions created by men, including political parties. Its tone and culture are very male-dominated and women are hooked on it.

“That’s why we need a critical group of women who are starting to gain the confidence to change culture and values ​​because they know they are supported by a strong network of women who believe change needs to happen.”

All this positive thinking is by no means a cover-up course in political life. McGowan said: “We explain reality stands for politics. We know how brutal it is and also how powerful and exciting it can be. This isn’t a knitting club. We are here for politics and if you want to do anything in politics you need power. And to have power, you need ambition. “

Victorian MP for Wendouree Juliana Addison

Victorian MP for Wendouree Juliana Addison: ‘We have people in the eye of the storm telling us, “We’ll tell you how tough it is, but you just have to do it.”‘ Photo: Guillermo Guzzoni / Juliana Addison

According to the Pathways course participants, well-known female politicians from across the political spectrum and from all levels of government open up in generous, honest and inspiring ways. A Pathways fellow, Member of Parliament Victoria for Wendouree Juliana Addison, recalled the very frank depiction of public life provided by former Australian Human Rights Commission president Gillian Triggs and Senator Jacqui Lambie, who in 2017 were both attacked in parliament and in the media. .

Addison says their honesty helped inspire him to go from being a schoolteacher to a politician: “We have people in the eye of the storm telling us, ‘We’re going to tell you how tough it is, but you just have to do it. The fact that you have raised your hand means you must. ‘To be forewarned means to be armed. And to know that it’s going to be hard for your relationship, it’s going to be tough for your kids, and you’re going to get very, very tired in the end because you put yourself in public scrutiny. “

Addison is now hiring him to mentor Pathways and says he goes to great lengths to help others, regardless of their political affiliation: “I would like to see parliament more representative. What we hope to achieve is that women from across the board with different political views and different perspectives will have the confidence and courage to stand in the public seat, and parliaments will be richer for that. “

Green Party Senator Sarah Hanson-Young, speaking last week about the latest parliamentary scandal, said women no longer want to be silent as spectators: “Standing up and being more vocal about it in public has created an environment where more and more women come to me and say, ‘I want to be involved and I want to be part of the solution. ‘ “

Hanson-Young said voters, too, told him they wanted more women in politics: “I really believe the community is ahead of the political class on this. Community will ultimately drive change. “

Most importantly, she says, electing more women to power will change the big picture: “It’s not just about making parliament a better, better, more equal place for women to work. If we want a dinkum fair childcare system in this country and if we want a real system of elderly care, it will only happen if we get more women in parliament to fight for it. “

She said the federal budget is an example of what happens in unequal parliaments: “We are in the middle of a pink recession and women are being forgotten. Not only is there no budget for women, but there are even worse impacts for women as a result of this budget.

“If you need a better example of what happens when you don’t have enough women in parliament, this is it.”


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Foreign investors and actors are not bound by the ‘first Australian’ arrival policy | Australian News | Instant News

Greg Hunt has clarified that foreign actors and businesses will not be subject to sanctions The “Australian first” approach to international arrivals as Australia struggles to clear the pile of people who want to go home.

The Minister of Health suggested that the “national interest” exception would continue to apply, clarifying that investors would not be barred by a rule preventing large numbers of international students arriving before the 36,500 Australians who still want to return.

On Friday, Scott Morrison revealed Australia’s chief health adviser had concluded the current hotel quarantine alternative was not considered safe, although in October he said he wanted to do so. developing “innovative” alternatives.

The prospect of Australia increasing the limit of 6,000 arrivals a week will now hinge on increasing hotel capacity, including as Melbourne resumes arrivals and agrees to low-risk countries for quarantine-free travel, following the New Zealand model.

Morrison said the commonwealth and national cabinet policy was “Australians to go home first” – but did not explain why international students were selected to go to the back line while business travel was permitted with special approval.

On Sunday, the health minister said Australia had “exceeded the prime minister’s target”, a clear reference for repatriation 25,000 Australians who have registered to return in mid-September.

Hunt explained that the 36,500 deposits were caused by “extra people” choosing to return home, a problem that Australia would have “forever” as some left and some returned.

Hunt said the arrival could be more driven by more capacity at Howard Springs and a “green lane” with “very safe” countries.

Asked about other categories of international tourists including business people, actors, and people working on film productions, Hunt replied: “Where it is something that matters to an individual. [economic] activity [does] … There are many reasons in terms of national interest ”.

The current exemption list allows workers in seasonal workers and Pacific employment programs, and people on business innovation and investment visas.

“We want to see international students – but because there are so many, they can replace a large number of Australians,” said Hunt.

“Australians would find it strange if we said that many Australians had to wait.”

Earlier, education minister Dan Tehan clarified that pilot programs to bring small numbers of international students to the Northern Territory and South Australia will continue to operate within existing boundaries.

Tehan told Sky News Australia had become “a victim of our own success” as coronavirus cases were increasing worldwide and more Australians wanted to return home.

Tehan said the federal government has written to states and territories asking them to submit a plan approved by the chief health officer to bring international students back.

The government is still exploring options such as quarantine on campus, he said.

Australia’s national vaccine policy, released on Friday, stipulates that the Covid-19 vaccine will be voluntary but the government may need it as a condition of entry to Australia.

Hunt told reporters while that option was open, the government had not yet made any decisions. “There are always options booked but at this stage I don’t anticipate [we will do that]. “

Hunt said vaccination rates among children have actually increased during the pandemic, so the government is expecting a “very wide take” of the Covid-19 vaccine.


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Enrollment of women in Australian universities drops by 86,000 in 2020 as the ‘pink recession’ hits | Australian News | Instant News

There were 86,000 fewer women studying at university in 2020 compared to 2019, following the gender impact of Covid-19 and the recession in Australia.

Newly released data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics show that there was a 7% decrease in the number of women enrolled in universities and some vocational courses, and a 2% decrease in the number of men.

Overall, the number of tertiary students fell by 112,500 between May 2020 and May 2019 – the biggest annual decline since 2004 when ABS data started compiling this data.

The decline in the number of students was strongly influenced by gender, with the number of female students dropping by 86,000, compared to 21,200 male students. Three quarters of the total decline occurred in female students.

And the decline in female participation was most pronounced among older women, with a drop of nearly 60,000 in women over 25.

ABS data were collected in the first two weeks of May 2020, during Australia’s Covid-19 lockdown. It surveys everyone, including international students, enrolled in studies for a certificate III or higher. That includes undergraduate and postgraduate degrees, diplomas and some Tafe and vocational courses.

Overall, this decline in female participation is also the largest drop since ABS registering began in 2004.

In terms of age, enrollment among those aged 15-24 fell by 80,000, and enrollment among those aged 25 to 64 fell by 32,000.

But while there are fewer young men, young women and older women at university, there is an increase in the number of older men, which, according to Shirley Jackson, an economist at Per Capita, reflects the recessionary nature of the coronavirus.

While the number of women over 25 fell by 59,200, there was actually an increase of 26,000 enrollments among men over 25.

In each age category over 30, more men registered this year than last year. However, in every age category except 55-64, there were fewer women.

Among those aged 25 to 29, 27,000 women dropped out of school, but an additional 15,000 men enrolled. For those aged 35 to 39, 22,000 women dropped out of school, but 3,300 men enrolled.

“This recession has become a pink collar recession,” said Jackson. “This has affected face-to-face businesses that depend on domestic consumption. Industries such as retail, hospitality, personal and community services, care work, and creative industries are predominantly female-dominated, all of which are closed in their entirety. “

She said that usually a recession sees an increase in university enrollment, but social and political factors make women actually drop out of school.

“We know that women are much more likely to be involved in unpaid care work at both ends of the life cycle than men. Children drop out of school and go to school at home. Women with young families very much forced to take up the vacancy and act as teachers and primary caregivers. “

“Older women are more likely to care for elderly or disabled or elderly family members … especially as there are so many cases of Covid in nursing homes and people are increasingly looking after their relatives at home.”

Jackson said this explains the increase in enrollment among older men, but the decline in women of the same age.

“But this trend has nothing to do with the economy … it’s entirely because we underestimate women socially, culturally and politically,” she said.

The ABS data also revealed a greater decrease in the number of young male students compared to young female students.

There were 47,200 fewer male students between 15 and 24, compared to 28,600 fewer female students. But that trend reverses as students get older.

ABS data also reveals that the number of students who have jobs is less than in 2019. The number of people who worked while they were studying fell by 283,000, resulting in a decrease from 59% of student employment to 50%.

“Women of all ages in general, and women under 25 in particular, are more likely to work on freelance contracts,” says Jackson.

“That means they are less likely to be offered job holders and are less likely to have surplus savings to weather the storms and take the time to engage in education or skills upgrading.”


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Australia’s service exports have been devastated – and that’s not good for jobs Greg Jericho | Business | Instant News

The is newest trade figures indicates that Australia continues to export more goods than it imports. But while the trade surplus is generally seen as a good thing, the reality is that our iron ore exports are making things look better than they really are, and the fall in our services exports is a better indicator of the state of the economy today.

Ten years ago, Australians anticipated what was considered virtually impossible – the Australian dollar would be almost the equivalent of the US dollar. Some of the nerds on Twitter (myself included) tweeted about a #parityparty and watch the live exchange rate draw closer.

The soaring prices for coal and iron ore after the GFC have pushed the dollar higher. And on October 14, 2010 the Aussie dollar hit US $ 0.99936, but not quite parity.

Immediately after that, there were certain times when the value slipped above US $ 1 but it wasn’t until November 4 that the daily average value was above parity:

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This is the perfect time if you are looking to buy goods from the US, or travel overseas; not that great if you want to encourage tourists to come here.

I thought about this while looking at the latest merchandise trade figures released on Monday by the Bureau of Statistics.

The surface image looks pretty good. With an exchange rate of around US $ 0.70, exporting was profitable, and in the 12 months to September we exported $ 71.2 billion more merchandise than we imported.

Yes, it is down compared to the previous month but still at a level unimaginable even three years ago.

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This is the kind of thing the government is proud of, even if it doesn’t take responsibility for any of it.

In fact, our merchandise exports consist mainly of three things – iron ore, coal and gas. Gold also has a role to play, but the first three accounted for more than 60% of all merchandise exports – at the start of this century they only made up a quarter:

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However, even among these top three there were differences. Last year, Australia exported $ 41 billion more for iron ore than coal and gas combined. And more importantly, even though iron ore exports have remained stable during the pandemic, coal and gas have fallen.

In the case of coal, it is just a continuation of a long landslide; in the case of gas, the drop is sudden and steep:

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This reflects the price movements of every commodity since the pandemic spreads around the world.

In September coal prices were 18% below March prices, LNG was down 38%, while iron ore was up 39%.

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Great news for iron ore companies, and for 0.8% of Australian workers working in the sector.

This has always been a big problem with our export sector – big exports come from industries that are not labor intensive.

Iron ore accounts for 36% of our merchandise exports, but less than 1% of total employment.

This is where memories of a decade ago and parity come back to haunt us.

Back then, when the dollar rose due to soaring prices for iron ore and coal, our exports of goods rose strongly, but services exports – most of which are tourism-related services and education – took a hit.

Typically our service exports grow between 6% and 7% each year. When the GFC hit, service exports fell 4% in the one year period. But even after the GFC they remained flat as Australia became an expensive place to visit – be it for tourism or education.

In the two and a half years that our currency has been at or above parity with the US dollar, our service exports have grown almost not at all:

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Now the currency issue is not a problem preventing people from visiting our beaches and taking part in our hospitality and education services – it is a pandemic.

And while we may be exporting more goods than we import, thanks to a lot of iron ore still being shipped overseas, our services export sector is completely devastated – down 14% from last year.

This of course flows into work.

Since February the number of workers in metal ore mining has increased by 1,400; conversely the number working in accommodation has fallen by 20,800:

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They all highlight the peculiar and fragile nature of our economy. Our export sector remains one of the goods – even in bad times iron ore exports will continue to grow; but our employment sector is very much where services continue to grow.

So a trade surplus would look good and maybe even help corporate tax revenues, but for the sake of economic health a better guide is how our services work. And for now, they’re not doing well at all.


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The true ‘free speech crisis’ at Australian universities is a crackdown on protests | Nina Dillon Britton | Opinion | Instant News

TThe idea of ​​a “free speech crisis” on Australian university campuses conjures up images of foreign interference, “social justice fighters being fueled” and students not speaking out for fear of being “canceled”.

But there is actually an ongoing crisis at our university which is receiving far less attention. On Wednesday, student protests at the University of Sydney against the government’s proposed cuts to higher education were forcibly dispersed by police. Videos show students running through campus to avoid police arrest, being dragged off the road by police and forced to be pushed to the curb. In one example, a law professor was forced to step down and was arrested.

All of this is happening as if to protect public health in the midst of the corona virus. At the same time, 40 classes meet indoors at other places on campus.

This is not an isolated event. Over the past few months, students opposing the government’s proposed cuts to higher education and rising fees have met with numerous police officers. Police have shut down protests, issued tens of thousands of dollars in fines, often breaking up protests by force. Further, the NSW police commissioner has consistently challenged Authorization of the Black Lives Matter protest in court.

At the same time, the state government has allowed thousands of people to return to shopping malls and beaches, and tens of thousands back to soccer stadiums. Outdoor protests carry a much lower risk of community transmission than large indoor gatherings (say, such as the Liberal party that was recently released. Annual General Meeting in South Australia). Despite claims by the NSW police commissioner, no community transmission has been linked to the Black Lives Matter protests in Victoria. When we return to the sort of normal state before the pandemic, governments have prioritized trade over our right to dissent.

The way Australians embrace social distancing to protect the health of their most vulnerable during this pandemic is extraordinary. But we haven’t had any meaningful national conversations about restoring our full right to protest and free speech as we leave isolation.

The media have an important role to play in this conversation. Despite public outrage (both “NSW Police” and “University of Sydney” trending on Wednesday as the police action video went viral) these protests barely covered major newspapers. It’s just because student journalists are able to record videos about the excessive police force on Wednesday and that a staff member was targeted that it was news at all. In particular, right-wing commentators who have previously expressed concern over threats to “free speech” or alleged Chinese influence in Australian universities have been quiet. Students feel alone in trying to have their voices heard.

The obvious fact is that continuing to target protesters will only strengthen the determination of the students. Organizers have promised to meet the increased use of police force with increased measures. The size of the protests has doubled in recent weeks and is starting to increase block traffic. Urgent, the protests at the start of the year were still small, social distancing and safe COVID-19. First, students divide themselves into small groups of less than 20 people to comply with the Public Health Command. It’s also scattered. The police stated that although these groups were physically separated, they were rounded up for “common purposes” and therefore violated orders.

In one very absurd moment, the police announced that students who sit in the courtyard for lunch can stay, but if they are there to protest the cutbacks in education, they should leave. The organizers have realized the only way for them to move forward is to put in a literal effort to outrun the police, making social distancing nearly impossible.

There is a good reason why students are so excited about this protest. Changes in government will see costs multiple multiple arts degrees and the degree of law, business and commerce increased by about a third. This will stop a lot of students worse background from considering college altogether, and graduates will enter the job market in a recession saddled with even greater debt.

Although the government provides pleasantries to increasing opportunities in STEM courses, it is also working to cut government funding for universities in all disciplines. Australia’s university sector has been among the hardest hit by Covid, with thousands of staff laid off from their jobs this year after the government refuses to extend the jobkeeper to a public university. Young people, who have disproportionately losing their already dangerous job During the pandemic and facing further cuts in youth benefits, they are angry that they are now being forced to pay more for poor quality education by politicians who enter university for free.

As a community, we have given up so much to ensure we tackle the pandemic. But this cannot be a permanent affair. Sad fact now that the police are now a common sight on our campus. At any time, the NSW government can choose to end this by freeing the protests as they did for university classes and football stadiums. But if this protest has taught us anything, it will not be given to us so easily. We have to fight for it. Nothing less than our fundamental freedom is at stake.

Nina Dillon Britton is a law student at the University of Sydney and the campus newspaper editor Honi Soit. He has covered the recent protests for the newspaper


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