Every workplace conversation, policy and action has the potential to either reinforce or challenge gender inequality and the kinds of attitudes and norms that drive violence. All workplaces can influence the structures, norms and practice that support ongoing gender inequality in Australia.
Despite progress in workplace equality and women’s participation, there is still a large gender pay gap and inequities both at home and at work.
Workplace policies and practices can perpetuate gender inequality by devaluing, excluding or marginalising women. This can result in bias unconsciously steering decision making or the status quo of gender inequality being preserved. On the other hand, workplaces can drive change by developing policies and practices that proactively support women and men to equally share care responsibilities and unpaid work, take up senior roles and be economically independent.
Peer relationships and stereotypes can be formed and shaped in the workplace, so what an organisation accepts and rewards will influence attitudes, beliefs and behaviours.
Workplaces have a key opportunity to counter persistent beliefs and attitudes that perpetuate gender inequality including the attitude that:
Likewise, in their interactions with stakeholders, workplaces can use their status and influence to challenge stereotypes and speak out against violence.