St Clare's International Women's Day Forum

As some of you may know, International Women’s Day was on 8 March.  St Clare’s Human Rights Group took the opportunity to acknowledge the achievements of the influential women in our lives, from international leaders, to our mums and grandmothers.

We also realised that, like our mothers and grandmothers, the women of this generation still face discrimination because of their gender. On Friday, 6 March, at a lunchtime forum organised by the Human Rights Group, students were invited to  participate in a conversation about gender equality.

The panel included special guest and community leader Aunty Joan McDonald, Mrs Case, Mrs Polson, and two of our senior Human Rights Group members, Sarah Locker and Adam Mayers. During this discussion, about 50 students were asked whether they had seen or experienced gender discrimination at school, or in the wider community.

We talked about the issues that girls and women face because of their gender, and what can be done to combat this. Some of the obstacles that the students and panel raised included sexism during employment, especially due to pregnancy or having children, the gender salary difference, pressures on young women to conform to social expectations of appearance and the language that some men use when talking about girls and women.

At the end of this discussion, people’s ideas on how to address these issues were summarised into a ten-point plan. This plan is to be sent to the Catholic Schools Office as a recommendation of action to prevent future discrimination against women in our schools and communities.  Thank you to all staff and students who were at the forum, and who helped with the organisation of this insightful event.

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