Gender Equality

Gender equality is the equal rights, responsibilities and opportunities of women, men, trans and gender diverse people. Equality does not mean that women, men, trans and gender diverse people will become the same, but that their rights, responsibilities, and opportunities will not depend on their gender.

In 2020, the Victorian Government introduced new reforms through the Gender Equality Act to address the serious issue and support women and girls to be safer in their homes, workplaces, and communities.

From 31 March 2021, public sector organisations with 50 or more employees such as local councils, health services, universities and emergency services must begin reporting on what they are doing to meaningfully progress gender equality in their workplace. Any policies, programs, or services seeking funding in Victorian budgets will also be subject to gendered analysis.

As a result, Council has developed a comprehensive Gender Equality and Action Plan.

Why does the Act focus on Workplaces?

Workplaces are crucial to preventing violence against women not only because violence can occur in the workplace, but also because workplaces can significantly influence our attitudes, beliefs, and behaviours both in our personal and professional lives. By implementing programs and policies to prevent violence against women, workplaces stand to benefit through:

  • Increased productivity.
  • Reduced absenteeism.
  • Decreased staff turnover.
  • Improves staff health and wellbeing.


How will Glenelg Shire Council improve and promote Gender Equality in the workplace?

Workplace Gender Audit

Under the Gender Equality Plan, Glenelg Shire Council Staff will be asked to participate in a Gender Audit Survey.

Councils must undertake a workplace gender audit against the workplace gender equality indicators, prescribed gender equality targets or gender equality quotas and additional disadvantage or discrimination (based on factors outlined above) that a person may experience.

The audit will be based on gender-disaggregated data, and (if available) data about Aboriginality, age, disability, ethnicity, gender identity, race, religion and sexual orientation.

Gender Equality Action Plan

Each Council must prepare a Gender Equality Action Plan that includes the results of the workplace gender audit, as well as strategies and measures for promoting gender equality in the workplace.

The Gender Equality Action Plan must consider the gender quality principles and consult with the council (made up of the councillors), the employees, employee representatives and other relevant stakeholders.

Under the Act, adequate resources must be allocated to developing and implementing the Gender Equality Action Plan.

Council has developed it's own Gender Equality and Action Plan 2021 - 2025(PDF, 2MB), which was endorsed by Council in July 2022.

This plan will guide the development and enhancement of a workplace culture in which the principles of gender equality, inclusion and respect underpin our policies and processes and organisational values, Respect, Integrity, Teamwork, Service Excellence and Innovation.

The actions identified have been developed through meaningful consultation with Councillors, the Executive Team, the Employee Relations Consultative Committee (ERCC), the Gender Equality Working Group, Employees, and informed from the Workplace Gender Audit and the People Matter Survey. 

How will Glenelg Shire Council improve and promote Gender Equality in the community?

Gender Impact Assessments

When developing or reviewing any policy, program, or service, Councils must undertake a gender impact assessment.

Gender impact assessments must assess the effects that each policy, program or service may have on persons of different genders, and state how the policy, program or service will be developed/varied to meet the needs of persons of different genders, address gender inequality and promote gender equality.

Where possible, the assessments should also take into account that gender inequality may be compounded by additional disadvantages or discrimination that a person may experience on the based on Aboriginality, age, disability, ethnicity, gender identity, race, religion and sexual orientation.

Gender Equality Lens

Glenelg Shire Council aims to promote Gender Equality through educating both staff and the wider community while implementing a new way of thinking by applying a gender lens in all that we do.

A gender equality lens is a way of looking at the work we do to identify ways of supporting the well-being of women and men.

Applying a gender lens in all our work helps us to create gender equity by ensuring that:

  • Any differences in the way processes, policies or services are likely to impact unfairly on women and men are anticipated.
  • Decisions are made that take account of and are responsive to gender.