Media Release by Senator the Hon Kay Patterson

Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action Reaffirmed

Minister for Family and Community Services and Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Women’s Issues, Senator Kay Patterson, has welcomed today’s decision by the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women in New York to reaffirm the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action.

Senator Patterson said the meeting of the 49th Commission at the United Nations has been an important opportunity to exchange views with member states on the challenges for women in the 21st century.

“Australia is proud of our record of action for women both within Australia and in our assistance to other nations through our international aid program.

“Over the last ten years, the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action have provided an important and consistent reference point by which we can all measure our progress.

“In Australia, we have made significant inroads across the Beijing Platform for Action’s 12 critical areas. Today our women have the same or better outcomes than men in several key areas, such as education and health, and continue to make steady progress in other areas.

“During the first week of this two week session I also took the opportunity to conduct bi-lateral meetings with a range of countries including Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, the United States and Vietnam. This was an important opportunity to further relations with these countries

“I wish delegates from all countries a successful conclusion to the session over the coming week which includes International Women’s day on the 8th March,” said Senator Patterson.