Media Release by The Hon Julie Collins MP

More women executives on Australian Government boards

Women are becoming more influential on Australian Government boards with female executives filling 35.3 per cent of Government board positions in the last financial year.

The latest figures are contained in the annual Gender Balance on Australian Government Boards Report released today by the Minister for the Status of Women, Julie Collins, at the National Assembly for Gender Equity and Inclusion in Melbourne.

Ms Collins said the progress being made showed the Gillard Government is on track to meet its target of having at least 40 per cent of Government board positions filled by women by 2015.

“The Australian Government is leading by example when it comes to women’s representation on boards,” Ms Collins said.

“The 35 per cent of women on Government boards is an all-time high and we will continue to work hard to achieve greater gender balance on the nation’s boards and in leadership roles.

“Looking ahead, 11 portfolios have already awarded at least 40 per cent of their new board appointments to women.

“For the year 2010-11, four government portfolios met or exceeded the gender balance target of 40 per cent, while eight portfolios had between 30 and 40 per cent women on their boards.

“These figures are a positive sign the 40 per cent target is helping to create a change in attitudes towards women and leadership.

“Targets like this are an important part of the Government’s ongoing efforts to give women equal opportunity in leadership and participation throughout the economy.

“Women remain under-represented in senior leadership and management positions in virtually all sectors, with only 13.8 per cent of ASX200 board members being women.

“The Government is calling on all Australian organisations to continue to support greater participation of women on boards and in leadership positions,” Ms Collins said.

The report is available at FaHCSIA website