Mid North Coast Women’s Forum a big hit

Over 40 IEU members packed in to the Noshtalgia Café, Port Macquarie on 23 June to enjoy a Friday night IEU Women’s Forum and dinner, with entertaining input on current and historical gender equity issues.

The night, which was registered with NESA for maintenance of accreditation, was organised by local teacher librarian and IEU Executive member Suzanne Penson, with Christine Wilkinson, IEU President, welcoming members and guests.

Pam Smith, Convenor of the IEU Women and Equity Committee, gave an overview of the 2017 Union agenda and talked of challenges at federal, state and local levels.

IEU Organiser Sandra White along with fellow members of the Lismore Diocese Workplace Gender Equality Committee, Mary Murtagh, a teacher at St Paul’s College Kempsey, and Suzanne, reported on work being undertaken by the committee such as developing recruitment and selection policy, and drafting job share support documents and a Parental Leave Toolkit.

The guest speaker for the evening was sports journalist Debbie Spillane. In 1984 Debbie was the first full time female broadcaster hired by ABC Sport and during various periods with the ABC she covered rugby league and cricket, as well as Olympic and Commonwealth Games.

Debbie spoke of her time as a regular on the TV series Live and Sweaty and of her work for various radio stations and print media, including the Sun-Herald and Rugby League Week. Debbie described some challenging experiences as one of Australia’s first women sports journalists.

Congratulations to Sue for organising such a fabulous night out!

Other 2017 IEU women’s forums will be held in Ballina on 10 August, in Tamworth on 31 August and at Westmead in western Sydney, on 19 October. The IEU Women and Equity Committee is holding a teleconference on 20 July.

Sandra White
IEU Organiser