About the Queensland women's strategy

The Queensland women's strategy 2022–⁠27 (PDF) (or DOCX) (the strategy) provides a framework for all Queenslanders to strengthen and support the rights of Queensland women and girls and work towards achieving a gender-equal Queensland.

The vision for our strategy is:

Women and girls have equal rights and equal access to opportunities. Women and girls are safe, valued, and able to freely participate and succeed in the economic, social and cultural opportunities available. Women and girls are recognised and celebrated for their achievements and contributions to the community.

Principles

The principles for our strategy are:

  • equality for all people is a human right
  • everyone benefits when social norms such as gender roles and stereotypes are challenged
  • equal treatment of all people benefits everyone
  • gender equality is inclusive and this strategy recognises all people who identify as women, including those who are transgender, as well as people who are non-binary or gender diverse
  • gender equality is everyone’s business, and everyone needs to work together to achieve it—governments, organisations and communities
  • achieving gender equality requires addressing differing and compounding impacts of discrimination depending on experience and removing barriers preventing women from succeeding and thriving
  • elevating First Nations women and girls and their voices is vital to achieving gender equality
  • an equitable and diverse labour market contributes to the growth and productivity of the Queensland economy
  • recognising and celebrating the achievements and contributions of women and girls contributes to breaking down gendered stereotypes.

Impact areas

The strategy includes commitments across all 5 impact areas, including many that cut across multiple impact areas. These commitments are intended to be delivered by government and businesses, organisations, industries and communities, acknowledging everyone has a part to play in gender equality.

Detailed information about initiatives to achieve these commitments, as well as progress over the previous 12 months, will be provided annually through an annual women’s statement. The first of these will be published in March 2023, 12 months after the commencement of the strategy.

The primary impact area is women’s economic security. Economic security is at the heart of gender equality, underpinning all other elements of gender equality throughout women’s lives.

The other 4 impact areas are:

  • safety, health and wellbeing
  • elevating First Nations women
  • women with diverse backgrounds and experiences
  • empowerment and recognition.

Women’s economic security

Our first and overarching priority is women’s economic security. Economic security is at the centre of gender equality, underpinning all other elements of gender equality throughout women’s lives.

We are committed to working together to ensure wherever possible that we avoid the inequities of the past, and all Queenslanders are able to thrive from the economic prosperity that we know comes from increased gender equality.

Women’s safety, health and wellbeing

Our second impact area is women’s safety and wellbeing. We know women’s safety is an ongoing priority issue of concern to the community. Although we have made significant progress over the past 5 years, there is much more to do to change the story for Queenslanders affected by men’s violence against women.

There is also work to do to support women’s equitable access to health and strengthen their broader wellbeing.

Elevating First Nations women

Our third impact area is elevating First Nations women. We know gender equality will never be achieved unless Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women’s outcomes are improved.

They need to be in control of decisions that impact their lives and be supported to raise their voices and truth tell about historical inequalities.

This impact area focuses on actions to achieve the recommendations of the Wiyi Yani U Thangani (Women’s Voices) report by the Australian Human Rights Commission.

Women with diverse backgrounds and experiences

The fourth impact area is women with diverse backgrounds and experiences. Gender inequality impacts different people in different ways at different stages of their life, particularly if they have intersecting diverse experiences such as disability, cultural and linguistic diversity, diverse sexuality and gender identity, or experience of poverty.

Older women experience not only the impacts of current gender inequalities, but also the cumulative impacts of gender inequality experienced throughout their lives. Women from regional, remote and rural areas also have added complexity and make unique contributions to the Queensland economy and community.

There is much to be learned from the experiences of all these groups of women, which will help tailor responses to support them to equitably access opportunities.

Empowerment and recognition

Our fifth impact area is empowerment and recognition. We are committed to supporting and empowering women into leadership roles in every aspect of life. We must recognise, celebrate and inspire women, so that their successes are visible and normalised right across the community. We will also work to ensure women’s voices are heard at every table, to influence the big decisions that affect everyone.

What you told us

To develop the strategy we conducted extensive public consultation, seeking Queensland communities’ views on how to address the economic and social inequalities faced by women and girls and strengthen the status of women in Queensland.

We heard from almost 1,500 people through a survey on the Get Involved website, 110 young people through our Youth eHub website, and 142 people who sent us consultation postcards.

We also received 99 written submissions from stakeholders, organisations and individuals. We held meetings and forums with key stakeholders—including a youth forum and a dedicated consultation with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women from across Queensland—and also established the Queensland Women’s Strategy Advisory Group to provide expert advice.

More than 90% of Queenslanders surveyed said gender equality was important and they highlighted gender equality will improve life for all genders and make Queensland communities more prosperous, safer and healthier.

During these consultations the community identified 2 major themes to be addressed as a priority:

  • men’s violence against women and girls, including domestic and family violence (DFV), sexual violence and sexual abuse
  • women’s economic security and financial independence and, in particular, the gender pay gap, and housing affordability and homelessness.

All feedback from the consultation participants was reviewed and incorporated into the new strategy.

Further information about the public consultation process and findings is available in the Queensland women’s strategy 2022–27 consultation report (PDF) (or DOCX).

Why we need gender equality

Positive changes have been made to the status and role of women over time. We are proud of the achievements made under our Queensland women's strategy 2016–21. However, gender inequality persists in our community. Deep cultural, systemic and institutional changes are needed to address the ongoing economic and social inequalities that face women and girls. This restricts women’s ability to participate fully in the social, economic and cultural opportunities that Queensland offers.

For example:

  • the gender pay gap in Queensland is unacceptably high at about 15.8%
  • women are vastly under-represented in leadership positions and boards of management
  • women are more likely to work in a narrow range of lower paying occupations, and continue to be under-represented within traditionally male-dominated industries
  • women take primary responsibility for unpaid domestic work and caring for dependants
  • women are vastly over-represented as victims of sexual offences, stalking and DFV.

These inequalities have been exacerbated by and highlighted during the COVID-19 pandemic. Women have been particularly affected by secondary effects of the pandemic such as:

  • increased exposure to DFV and increased difficulty leaving unsafe homes
  • increased unpaid domestic and caring responsibilities, including disproportionate responsibility for children at home
  • disproportionate financial hardship and loss of employment
  • employment in industries placing them at higher exposure risk such as health, aged care and cleaning.

A society that is gender equal promotes and protects women’s rights, interests and wellbeing and ensures women’s maximum participation in all aspects of society, which in turn leads to better social and economic outcomes for all.

Everyone has a role to play to achieve gender equality.

Contact

If you have any questions about the strategy, please contact the Office for Women by email women@qld.gov.au or 1800 177 577 (freecall, Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm).

An easy-to-read version of the new strategy will be released shortly. If you have any questions about the easy-to-read version, please contact us.