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Taking the lead: gender equality 

Published: 26 July 2021

Leadership commitment statement adopted 

Cardinia Shire Council has adopted a Gender Equality Leadership Commitment Statement, taking a strong stance towards promoting gender equality within our community and council. 

“This public commitment is important. It signals we are taking this very seriously,” said Shire Mayor, Councillor Brett Owen.   

“Council will not tolerate gender inequality within our community.” 

The statement addresses unequal expectation, pressures and treatment based on gender in our community.  

The statement outlines the vision that council wants everyone who lives, works and spends time in Cardinia Shire – regardless of their gender identity – to be treated with respect and fairness, to feel and be safe, and to have equal access to opportunities to reach their potential and pursue their dreams. 

The statement also details barriers to achieving the vision, and solutions and call to action, These include continuously striving to put policies and practices in place that help to deliver gender equitable programs and services for everyone in Cardinia Shire; actively listening to women, girls and gender diverse people in our community; learning from their lived experiences to help make Cardinia Shire a safer, healthier, fairer and more equitable place for all; creating opportunities for women, girls and gender diverse people in our community to have a voice and inform our decision making; and leading by example on gender equality. 

“Gender equality is good for everyone, and is not negotiable,” said Cr Owen.  

“Council is committed to promoting gender equality in its policies, programs and services, and in supporting and promoting gender equality within our communities.”  

Cr Owen said council is taking positive action towards achieving workplace gender equality and in line with the state government’s Gender Equality Act 2020 - which aims to improve workplace gender equality in the Victorian public sector, universities and local councils - Cardinia Shire is also developing a Gender Equality Action Plan, and has commenced undertaking Gender Impact Assessments for any new policy, program or service that directly and significantly impacts our community.  

“Everyone is affected by gender inequality - women, men, trans and gender diverse people, children and families – and it impacts people of all ages and backgrounds. 

“We must continue to strive toward a community where people of all genders have equal rights, responsibilities and opportunities,” said Cr Owen. 

The Leadership Commitment Statement supports the intent of the Community Vision 2040 where our community told us that it’sit is important for all residents to feel safe and welcome, including: that we are all valued for who we are; we are different, but we are together as a community; we empower everyone to have a voice; and we support the people of Cardinia Shire to be strong, resilient, socially connected and physically and mentally well.  

To view Council’s Gender Equality Leadership Commitment Statement visit www.cardinia.vic.gov.au/genderequality 

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