Welcome back to our March 2019 newsletter!

March was a month which celebrated many positive events – the celebration of International Women’s Day was on March 8th and Seniors Week was held during 18th to the 24th of March.  And the 20th anniversary of Harmony Day on 21st March focused on celebrating Australian multiculturalism, and everything that migrants and refugees have contributed to Australia.

Harmony Day also coincided with the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, with this year’s theme being ‘Mitigating and countering rising nationalist populism and extreme supremacist ideologies’.

Yet on 15th March, WCHM staff were saddened by the terrible event in Christchurch where fifty people lost their lives in mass shootings at 2 mosques – Muslim people gathering at their Friday prayers to practice their faith were targeted by a white Australian man who was motivated by hate and the ideology of white supremacy. However, we were also heartened by the way that New Zealand’s Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, showed leadership by focusing on the victims and not the perpetrator – ‘He may have sought notoriety, but we in New Zealand will give him nothing, not even his name’.  He is a terrorist. He is a criminal. He is an extremist. But he will, when I speak, be nameless.’

There were also many positive announcements for women during March.  WCHM welcomed the announcement by the Federal Opposition to improve contraceptive access and make access to abortions easier.

In our February newsletter, we highlighted the lack of focus on women in a local ACT announcement about a new justice reinvestment program for the ACT: Building Communities Not Prisons.  Since then WCHM was pleased to receive additional information from the Minister for Corrections and Justice Health, Shane Rattenbury, about some individual initiatives particularly for female detainees and further work that is in development.  You can read his advice below.

In this newsletter we highlight the launch of a new WCHM report, and several consultation and submission processes that are underway which WCHM will be involved with, and which we encourage others to also participate in.

We hope you enjoy this issue of our newsletter. Shortly we will be asking you to provide us with feedback on our work and on your views about our monthly newsletter, and we hope that you will take the time to complete the survey, so that we can learn from your feedback.

Anne Summers at the press club lecturn

National Press Club address in lead up to International Women’s Day  

On 6 March at a National Press Club address, Anne Summers discussed…
green door with padlock

New Report from WCHM

On 11 April WCHM will be releasing our newest report - The stories…
woman silhouetted with a barbed wire fence

Justice reinvestment for women in prison

During March, WCHM was pleased to receive some good news from…
woman holding coins

Contraception and abortion – Labour announcements

WCHM welcomed the announcement by the Federal Opposition to improve…
Front entrance to Calvary Private Hospital
an illustration of a cervix

Free Cervical Screening Tests!

SHFPACT (Sexual Health & Family Planning ACT) is offering…
a red light shaped as a heart

Heart Age Calculator

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, in 2017 an…
pregnant woman with toddler on her lap

Launch of ‘It Takes a Village’

WCHM’s Deputy CEO attended the opening of a powerful new exhibition…

Pilot workshop: Pregnancy and birth, making wise choices

Canberra Mothercraft Society and Safe Motherhood for All have…
Woman rubbing her eyes
a pink cake with the continents on it

PANDSI’s Cake Off 2019!

The PANDSI Cake Off event will be held at the Hyatt Hotel Canberra,…