Whilst International Women’s Day (IWD) 2016 recognises the valuable role women play in delivering quality care in nursing, midwifery and aged care, the Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF) says it also highlights how women are financially disadvantaged throughout their working life.
ANMF Federal Secretary, Lee Thomas, said nursing and midwifery continue to be female dominated professions, with women making up more than 92 per cent of the total workforce.
“IWD is a day for our members to celebrate and recognise the fantastic work women carry out every day and night, in hospital EDs, maternity units and in aged care facilities,” Ms Thomas said.
“But importantly, it’s also an opportunity to address the long-list of financial burdens women face all the way through their working lives, from the time they enter the workforce to the time they retire.
“As the ACTU’s Gender Pay Gap report has found, women continue to earn less than men; they’re financially disadvantaged throughout pregnancy and during periods of maternity leave, and then in retirement they continue to suffer, as the average amount of super for a woman is $138,150 compared to $292,500 for a man.
“In addition, many women are still at risk of the Government moving to cut their much-needed penalty rates, particularly those working in the aged care sector.
“The Prime Minister is quoted as saying ‘there has never been a more exciting time to be an Australian’, but it’s hardly exciting if you’re a working woman struggling to make ends meet.
“On this IWD, it’s time the Turnbull Government addresses the ongoing inequality working women continue to face.
“The ANMF is calling on Mr Turnbull to make it one of his key election priorities, for the sake of all Australian women.”