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Thursday, 1 August 2019
Page: 1838

Women's Economic Security


Ms LIU (Chisholm) (14:56): My question is to the minister representing the Minister for Women. Will the minister outline to the House how the Morrison government is backing Australian women who choose to have more choices about how they live their lives?


Mrs ANDREWS (McPhersonMinister for Industry, Science and Technology) (14:56): I thank the member for her question. Both Australian men and Australian women chose the Morrison government's positive plan for our future less than 11 weeks ago.

Opposition members interjecting

Mrs ANDREWS: I understand that those opposite who have just laughed are clearly having an issue coming to terms with the fact that they are not in government and that their plan was rejected.

Mr Brendan O'Connor interjecting

The SPEAKER: The member for Gorton is now warned.

Mrs ANDREWS: But our government has been working every single day to repay the trust that the Australian people have put in us and to back the choices that they made at the last election. Australian women chose aspiration and strong economic management over Labor's plan to take more of their money and to decide what's best for them. Our government has always been about expanding choices for women and delivering more opportunities. We've already delivered a strong economy, with over 1.4 million new jobs, and about 55 per cent of those jobs were taken up by women. Women's full-time employment and female participation have reached record highs under our government, and we now have the lowest gender pay gap on record.

Earlier this year we delivered the 2019 Women's economic security statement. It's a $151.4 million investment to improve the financial security and independence of Australian women. It had some very practical assistance contained in it, such as the Future Female Entrepreneurs Program to help young women start their own businesses, because we know that, when you empower women financially, you empower the whole community. We're also pleased to be making the largest ever investment, $328 million, in frontline services to reduce violence against women. Since our new childcare package was introduced last June, childcare costs have come down by 7.8 per cent on average around the country. We're helping women save for retirement and we're supporting women in rural and regional Australia.

I know that the Prime Minister is backed by some amazing women in his family. He also has the backing and experience of a record number of women in cabinet. We have outstanding female additions to the class of 2019. That's why Australian women can be certain that the Morrison government is on their side. We're supporting their choices and we'll continue to deliver for them and for all Australians.