Women of Steel

Proud to be from the Gong, Women of Steel documentary makes festival of Sydney top 10.

The IEUA NSW/ACT gives a solidarity salute to Director Robynne Murphy and all the other brave women of steel on this momentous film achievement.

Women of Steel is a documentary film that depicts the struggles of a group of working class, migrant women who were denied jobs by one of the biggest employers in the Illawarra in the 1980s.

During that time BHP employed about 20,000 workers but had neither the ticker nor the will to hire women to do the same work as their male workforce. These women stood up to BHP – they wanted to work and they wanted equality. They took the fight to the employer and continued it into the high courts and won.

Through their efforts and struggle they can stand proud. They helped pave a path to gender equality and to change discrimination laws. They challenged social norms and inspired a generation of girls and women to be confident in pursuing any vocation they choose.

The film has been a long time in the making and would not have reached this point without decades of support from local community volunteers, more than 500 donors and Robynne’s 30 year career on the floor of the Port Kembla steelworks.

The IEUA, along with other unions, has supported and promoted the film. At our IEUA NSW/ACT 2018 Women’s Conference, Robynne was a guest speaker at a Wollongong International Women’s Day event where she gained even more support for the making of the film.

Women of Steel tickets are available to the public and the film will be available for viewing from 10 June 2020: ondemand.sff.org.au/film/women-of-steel/ and view the trailer: vimeo.com/344035067

Tina Smith and Valerie Jones