Media Release by The Hon Julie Collins MP

Minister leads Australian delegation to Bangladesh

Minister for the Status of Women Julie Collins is, this week, leading an Australian Government delegation to Bangladesh, representing Australia as Commonwealth Chair-in-Office at the 10th Women’s Affairs Ministers Meeting (WAMM) in Dhaka.

Ms Collins said the meeting provided a vital opportunity for Commonwealth nations to discuss gender issues and strategies to advance the status of women.

“Building strong partnerships with other countries is vital in our quest to expand economic opportunities for women and increase women’s participation in politics and civil life,” Ms Collins said.

“Global alliances and international gatherings like 10WAMM help ensure we are working together to drive real change.”

In a keynote address to the Commonwealth Business Council’s Special Forum on Women’s Economic Empowerment today, Ms Collins spoke about the Australian Government’s commitment to gender equality and the importance of women’s social and economic participation in the fast-moving global environment of the 21st century.

While in Dhaka, Ms Collins will also visit the Acid Survivor’s Foundation. Australia has provided $1.2 million to the Acid Survivor’s Foundation since 2011.

“This funding supports a burn care service for victims of acid attacks and provides legal and rehabilitation services to the survivors, the majority of whom are women. It also supports ongoing efforts to prevent gender-based violence,” Ms Collins said.

Ms Collins said Australia has a strong role to play internationally in preventing gender-based violence and advancing gender equality.

“The Australian Government is committed to ending violence against women and girls and understands that to make a real and sustained difference, governments across the Commonwealth must work together,” Ms Collins said.

A full transcript of Minister Collins’ speech at 10WAMM is available at