CONTENT WARNING: This article mentions rape, sexual assault and gender-based violence.

Some of Australia’s most prominent women have launched a new campaign, #SafetyRespectEquity, to call for policy reforms that would better protect women and children.

The campaign features loads of women who have made waves in their activist work around Australia’s misogyny. Some of the familiar faces in the campaign include Brittany HigginsGrace TameChanel Contos and Yasmin Poole.

They’ve formed a coalition with former Australia Post CEO Christine Holgate, Australian Council of Trade Union president Michele O’Neil, film-maker, academic and First Nations advocate Larissa Behrendt, gold-medallist Paralympian Madison de Rozario, former Mayor of Sydney Lucy Turnbull, businesswoman Wendy McCarthy, ex-Liberal MP Julia Banks and The Parenthood director Georgie Dent.

A bloody impressive cast there, TBH.

The campaign is called “Safety. Respect. Equity”. It’s calling for a range of policies, including asking the government to introduce all 55 recommendations from the 2020 Respect@Work report.

The full list of aims is on the campaign’s website.

As well as implementing the Respect@Work recommendations, the group is calling for 10 days of paid family and domestic violence leave, action on the National Plan for First Nations women and girls, and ensuring effective employment programs for women with disability.

The #SafetyRespectEquity campaign is also calling for legal reform to eliminate the gender pay gap; free, accessible, quality early childhood care and education; comprehensive consent education in schools, unis, work and at home; and stronger, consistent child sexual assault laws.

Phew. A fkn load of super important goals there.

The campaign’s been launched right before International Women’s Day which is, OFC, on March 8th. Excellent timing.

“Racism, sexism and discrimination are built into the structures all around us,” said Larissa Behrendt in the campaign vid.

The video points out some of the statistics that too often define modern womanhood in Australia. Significantly, that one out of five women will experience rape or sexual assault in their life. It also makes clear that those statistics are higher for First Nations women, women of colour, LGBTQIA+ women and women with disability.

“Australia is riddled with human rights violations and gender-based violence,” consent activist Chanel Contos said in the vid.

It’s fkn powerful stuff. But it’s also incredibly disheartening that we’re still having to call for this shit to change in year 2022.

Help is available.

If you require immediate assistance, please call 000.

If you’d like to speak to someone about sexual violence, please call the 1800 Respect hotline on 1800 737 732 or chat online

Under 25? You can reach Kids Helpline at 1800 55 1800 or chat online.

Image: YouTube / Safety. Respect. Equity