Tens of thousands of women are expected to march at dozens of rallies across Australia today, culminating in a protest on Parliament House in Canberra at the heart of where they are demanding action.
The Women’s March 4 Justice movement, which has gathered momentum in recent weeks, is calling for a change in Federal Parliament, demanding all politicians address and “put an end to the issues of sexism, misogyny, dangerous workplace cultures and lack of equality in politics and the community at large”.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has offered to meet a “small delegation” of those who attend the Canberra rally today, one of the organisers Janine Hendry said.
FULL LIST OF RALLIES BELOW
Ms Hendry said she had been called by someone from the Prime Minister’s Office and the group would be “carefully considering the offer” before formally responding before the march.
“What we would like to know is why the PM can’t come out to meet us and talk directly?” Ms Hendry wrote on Twitter.
“More than 100,000 women and allies from every walk of life are standing up to speak. How could meeting with just three women be enough? #EnoughIsEnough.”
Since its launch two weeks ago, the movement has attracted more than 10,000 followers on Twitter, more than 33,000 members of its Facebook group, and more than 22,000 signatures to its petition.
It has been driven by recent allegations of sexual assault by members of Parliament.
The petition calls for immediate action on four demands:
– Full independent investigations into all cases of gendered violence and timely referrals to appropriate authorities. Full public accountability for findings
– Fully implement the 55 recommendations in the Australian Human Rights Commission’s Respect@Work report of the National Inquiry into Sexual Harassment in Australian Workplaces 2020
– Lift public funding for gendered violence prevention to world’s best practice
– The enactment of a federal Gender Equality Act to promote gender equality. It should include a gender equity audit of Parliamentary practices.
Protesters plan to dress head-to-toe in black, brandish signs and listen to speakers calling for swift action towards gender equality.
When will they take place?
Most rallies are planned to start at the same time, midday on Monday, March 14.
Some were held earlier on Sunday and others vary in their start time.
The Canberra rally will be MCed by Julia Zemiro and Welcome to Country will be given by Aunty Violet Sheridan.
Among those scheduled to speak at the rally in Canberra are ACTU Secretary and outspoken political activist Sally McManus, Aboriginal research scholar Dr Tjanara Goreng Goreng and Saxon Mullins, the complainant in the highly-publicised rape trial of Luke Lazarus.
Other speakers announced by Women’s March 4 Justice include Madhumitha Janagaraja, Michele O’Neil, Animata Conteh-Biger, Biff Ward, Virginia Hausegger, Avan Daruwalla, and Maddie Chia.
Where are marches taking place?
There are more than 40 rallies planned across the country (including some that took place on Sunday).
Albury, NSW (Also see Wodonga, Vic)
Bellingen, NSW (March 14)
Wollongong – Vigil & Transport to Canberra
Torquay – Surf Coast, Vic
Wodonga – ALSO see Albury Event