Business School Topics
UWA MBA alumnus Fadzi Whande has challenged more men to join women in fighting for gender equality.
Speaking on her return from the 59th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women, hosted by the United Nations in New York, Ms Whande said that no country in the world had yet achieved gender equality.
"I attended many sessions throughout my time in New York. Former US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, announced at the official opening: ‘there has never been a better time in history to be a woman.' I do believe that and so should we all," Ms Whande said.
"However, I could not help but feel somewhat discouraged as statistics kept confronting me."
- Weekly, one woman will die at the hands of a current or former partner.1
- One in three women has experienced physical violence since the age of 15.2
- One in five women has experienced sexual violence.3
- Full-time adult ordinary time earnings for women are 18.8 % less than men.4
- Women full-time graduates will earn an average of 93.8 % of male salaries.5
Women from immigrant or refugee backgrounds face even more disadvantages.
"Language barriers, lack of support networks, traditional cultural beliefs related to gender stereotyping, lack of knowledge about how to access support, legal and other types of assistance, are just a few of the various but serious barriers that stop culturally and linguistically diverse women from achieving their full potential and their goals and from enjoying equal opportunities to enable them to contribute to the overall economic and social progress of their communities or country," Ms Whande said.
Australia received commendation from the Executive Director of UN Women, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, for having the highest number of men signed up for the He for She campaign.
But, says Ms Whande, men need to take more action.
"We need more than signatories; we need men to change their behaviours, to call out sexism, to do their share of unpaid work, to create space in positions of power for women to lead," Ms Whande said.
"So men of UWA and beyond, I challenge you to pick up a hammer, shovel or even a diaper and join us so that you can help ensure your daughters, sisters, mothers, partners, wives and friends have different statistics from the ones in which I'm living."
Ms Whande received funding from the UWA Business School to attend the Commission on the Status of Women, held from 9-20 March in New York.
Read Fadzi Whande's full blog post here.