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Australian businesses ‘doing more to address gender inequality’

Published: January 6, 2017

Businesses in Australia are moving towards gender equality, according to a new report.

More businesses in Australia are changing their ways to achieve gender equality, according to new research.

A report published by the Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) reveals that the number of organisations to receive the Employer of Choice for Gender Equality citation jumped from 90 in 2015 to 106 in 2016.

This is despite the WGEA adding more rigorous criteria to the commendation, indicating that Australian businesses are doing more address gender inequality.

The report revealed that the trends identified among this year’s recipients included flexibility for all employees, programmes to help women move into positions of leadership and technical roles, and parental leave and return-to-work policies that are tailored to the individual.

Australian businesses are also doing more to support men’s caring responsibilities, while they are also carefully analysing gender pay gaps to eradicate them permanently.

Commenting on this year’s report, Libby Lyons, director of the WGEA, said that the results suggest organisations understand that there is a competitive advantage to addressing gender inequality in the workplace.

“Employers increasingly recognise that equal participation by women and men at all levels of an organisation is good for workplace culture and performance,” said Ms Lyons.

“WGEA data shows there is progress towards gender equality in Australian workplaces, but it is too slow. That is why it is so encouraging to see more than 100 organisations meet the very high standard required to receive the WGEA Employer of Choice for Gender Equality citation this year.”

She congratulated the newly inaugurated recipients for their commitment to making workplaces equal for everyone, adding that she hopes to see this trend continue to grow in the future.

The organisations that received the citation range from small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs) to extremely large corporations, such as banks and universities – which are typically male-dominated industries.

Ms Lyons believes that every industry has its own challenges when it comes to gender equality. She hopes that the new inductees will lead change in their own sectors and promote the WGEA’s message.

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