The irony of Trump’s anti-quarantine supporters protesting in Handmaid’s uniforms, while brandishing slogans such as “my body my choice”, surely wins the whacko moment of the week!
Does government policy need the scrutiny of a gender lens? Of course it does!
But, in this weird COVID world, women must become a force to be reckoned with if post-COVID governments are to reimagine not only how we work, but how we measure what matters.
Most of us are well aware of how the multiple effects of deficient policies badly impact women – particularly in times of social and economic crisis. We could see it coming. But could government? It seems not.This is why, as Marian Sawer has so clearly articulated on BroadAgenda this week, Australia must establish either a parliamentary standing committee or some form of ‘specialised body’, that can dissect and interrogate legislation to unearth the potentially different impacts on men and women, and the gender equality implications of policy outcomes. As Prof Sawer points out, there are 89 parliaments around the world that do this, but Australia is not one of them. Importantly, we cannot assume that the 37 Percent of female parliamentarians around the country will take on this role by osmosis. They don’t. And they won’t. Nor should it be their job.
Also this week, while the Murdoch media was taking aim at the Victorian Deputy Chief Health Officer over her mis-tweet about coronavirus being analogous to the arrival of Captain Cook, BroadAgenda was focused on the specific vulnerability of aboriginal women and children during the pandemic lock down. While pointing out that aboriginal women remain “32 times as likely to be hospitalised due to family violence as non-aboriginal women’ Shawana Andrews is unequivocal in her call for greater service support.
Rarely would BroadAgenda publish an anonymous contributor. But this week’s submission by a writer about his personal struggle with mental health and the constrictions of masculinity was a no-brainer. This powerful piece is confronting and therefore not for everyone. Read gently.
Our Gender News list this week is rich with reading and worth a good scroll.
Strong argument (which supplements many we’ve made in BroadAgenda) for gender responsive budgeting. A call for the G20 – representing 80% of the world’s economy – to fall in line with SDG5 and the numerous statements made by the Business20, Labour20 and Women20 and finally get serious about using gender budgeting as a critical policy tool.
Scientific American suggests ‘Our Response to VOICD-19 is Male-Centric’. Who knew! While the Age suggests ‘There’s a silver lining for fathers in the COIVD crisis.’ But what about those damn kids interrupting my zoom!
The UN puts an alarming number on unplanned pregnancies due to COVID crisis – 7 million, and 31 million cases of VAW. And if that’s not bad enough, now evidence thatCOIVD is whacking women academics where it really hurts – publications.
Speaking of whacks, things are very whacky in the US (what’s new), but we rather delighted in news about not just ‘essential workers’, but luxury ‘essential’ items (who doesn’t crave a scented candle!). But whacko of the week must go to The Donald’s support sheilas in Handmaid’s outfits – clearly they have no sense of irony, or they are very, very dumb, or they never read the book. Or, they’re just Trump’s women! Unlike those ‘nasty’, ‘horrid’ Women Reporters, whom the orange man hates with a passionate pout.
And here’s something to tickle your fancy. What do you think Barak Obama’s team would do when Australia’s PM, Tony Abbott was really annoying them? They’d watch a Julia Gillard’s misogyny speech on loop!
Lastly, for pod listeners, here’s more love for Jacinda Ardern and interesting yak about women leaders around the world from Foreign Policy … where the male interviewer puts it in plain English: “I do think female leaders … just tend to be more competent because the standard you have to reach to compete against male politicians is higher, because women face so much more shit on the way up.”
I think he just nailed it!
It’s cold, windy and grey out my window. A good weekend to stay indoors (oh, why not!) and read!
Happy weekend friends