frost on grass

It has been good to hear this week that things are starting to open up and that the ACT Government is easing some COVID19 restrictions. But while restrictions have eased, remember that your responsibility hasn’t.  It is important to do the right thing and maintain 1.5 metres physical distance from others, practise good hygiene, limit public gatherings to no more than 10 people, and to stay home if you feel unwell to protect yourself and others! You can find out more about changes to restrictions at www.covid19.act.gov.au/faqs/faqs-changes-to-restrictions.

In our last newsletter we highlighted the survey that we were conducting of women in the ACT and surrounding regions. The good news is that in only 2 weeks we received over 540 eligible responses! This is a significant response, so thank you to everyone who completed our survey and shared it with their friends and family.  The survey has closed and we are now busy analysing the results in detail, but you can see a summary of the initial demographic results below.  The results will help us to get an understanding of how COVID-19 is impacting on their health and wellbeing, their family life and their living and employment situations.

While we did not get many survey responses from ACT women who had lost their jobs, we have all seen the latest unemployment figures and the discussions about the job losses and wage loss across Australia as a result of the impacts from COVID19 social isolation. One of the biggest concerns for WCHM has been the lack of focus on the gendered impacts of job losses, and specifically the impact in the ACT. WCHM’s CEO spoke on ABC Canberra radio with Paul Kruger on 23 April about what we were hearing and seeing in relation to ACT women and unemployment. You can read a summary below.

And while things are starting to change slowly in opening up, it is important that ACT women remember to look after their own health and wellbeing.  Recently in May it was Heart Health Week and World Ovarian Cancer Day – both important health issues for women to know about. Read more below.

COVID19 has been a hard time for or mums-to-be and new parents. That is why WCHM has been working closely with the Women, Children and Youth area of Canberra Health Services about their plans for women who are pregnant or giving birth during the enforced social isolation and we are pleased to see the responses that were put in place. And Calvary has also released information. You can read more below.

We hope you enjoy reading this newsletter! And as autumn is drawing to a close, enjoy the last of the May weather this weekend – while staying safe and social distancing!

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