ABOUT THE CONFERENCE
2021 has been a confronting year when it comes to women and workplaces. The Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) Conference in July will bring together the themes which have been residing in the public discourse and coursing through our collective consciousness. We hope to harness that energy as we RESPECT, REFLECT and ROAR
Workplace culture around Australia has been under the microscope – arguably nowhere more so than in Parliament itself. Scrutiny has led to renewed calls for an improved culture of respect to welcome and value diversity, recognise new perspectives, and engender a greater sense of confidence from not just women but our number one stakeholder more broadly: the Australian people.
As we gather to brainstorm for a better future, we will take stock of our individual journeys. We will reflect on work/life balance, professional development, the commitment to calling out bad behaviour and ensuring the guardrails of support are well-maintained.
Committed to strengthening and safeguarding the well-being of women parliamentarians, we will assess the various domains where we might effect positive change, bring some beneficial ruckus and make our voices heard. It is time to roar about domestic violence legislation and economic empowerment for women; to ensure policy is informed by various gender perspectives; to strive for more women in Parliament and to persevere in tackling bullying and harassment.
Travel permitting, we warmly invite our membership to join us in Darwin this July for the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) Conference. Virtual attendance will also be available via a live platform, OnAIR.
We hope to see you there (in one form or another)!
for those attending in person
(times in Australian Central Standard Time)
Please note that times may be subject to change
COUNTDOWN TO THE CONFERENCE
Speaker of the Northern Territory Legislative Assembly
Ngaree Ah Kit is the Member for Karama
An Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander woman of Chinese descent, she was born in Katherine, NT and has spent most of her time residing in the northern suburbs of Darwin. She followed her late Father John (JAK) Ah Kit into Territory politics and became the first Aboriginal female Speaker of an Australian parliament following her re-election in August 2020.
Ngaree is focussed on preventing suicide and the impact that loss of life has on those who are left behind by investing in initiatives that encourage individual and community empowerment and grass roots-led initiatives. Through her lived experiences of suicide, mental health and leadership, Ngaree seeks ways to eliminate barriers that prevent Territorians from accessing quality services that enable them to live independently and contribute to their family and community. In November 2020, Ngaree brought together local residents to form a community-led group to provide input into the work being undertaken by Government and other stakeholders to address community safety.
She believes that the power of change lies with those who are directly impacted and works to encourage greater participation by Territorians.
As Speaker, Ngaree is committed to ensuring that all elected members and their staff have adequate security provisions in place to allow them to safely serve Territorians. Ngaree is also focussed on supporting the mental health and wellbeing of elected members during their term and is looking at ways in which members can be better supported throughout their departure from the NT parliament.
Chair of the CWP Australia Region and Senator for Queensland
Senator Nita Green was elected in 2019 to represent Queensland in the Australian Senate. Since being elected she has advocated for more social housing in regional Queensland, providing greater support for remote indigenous communities, and tackling domestic and family violence in Australian and the Pacific. Before being elected to Parliament, Senator Green worked as an Industrial Officer at the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union, an Employment Lawyer and Policy Adviser. She was also the Queensland Field Director for the Equality Campaign during Australia’s Marriage Equality vote. Senator Green is currently the Secretary of the Labor’s Pandemic Recovery Jobs and Industry Taskforce, and a member Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights and the Senate Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation.
Former Foreign Minister of Australia and Chancellor Australia National University
The Hon. Julie Bishop served as Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs from 2013 until her resignation in 2018. She was the first female to hold the role as well as the first female Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party, serving for 11 years.
As Foreign Minister, Ms Bishop was responsible for strengthening Australia’s key strategic and economic relationships with Ministerial responsibility for more than 5,000 departmental staff, 110 overseas missions as well as government agencies Australian Secret Intelligence Service and Australian Centre for International Agriculture Research.
In 2014, she led the international response to the downing of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 over Ukraine, and was awarded the Commander of the Order of Merit of the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Under her leadership, the 2017 Foreign Policy White Paper was developed, providing a comprehensive policy framework for the next decade; and the New Colombo Plan was established, enabling Australian undergraduates to live, study and work in the Indo-Pacific region. Within five years more than 40,000 students have participated in the Plan.
In a political career spanning over 20 years, Julie also served as Minister for Education, Science and Training, Minister for Women’s Issues and Minister for Ageing.
Prior to entering politics, Ms Bishop was Managing Partner of the law firm Clayton Utz in Perth.
In 2020 Julie was awarded a Fisher Family Fellowship for the Future of Diplomacy Project at Harvard Kennedy School Belfer Centre for Science and International Affairs. In 2021 Julie was awarded the Kissinger Fellowship at the McCain Institute of International Leadership at Arizona State University. In 2021 Julie was appointed by the UK Government to the G7 Equality Advisory Council (GEAC).
Julie is the Chancellor of Australian National University, Chair of Telethon Kids Institute, Chair of Prince’s Trust Australia, member of the international advisory boards of Afiniti and the Human Vaccines Project and is the Patron of Shooting Stars – an education programme for young aboriginal girls.
She has also established a boutique advisory firm, Julie Bishop and Partners.
Sex Discrimination Commissioner, Australia
Kate Jenkins is Australia’s Sex Discrimination Commissioner and a member of the Australian Human Rights Commission. Her purpose is to advance gender equality, consistent with the Sex Discrimination Act and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women.
Kate is currently leading a number of projects, including the Independent Review into Commonwealth Parliamentary Workplaces and implementing key recommendations from the Respect@Work: National Inquiry into Sexual Harassment in Australian Workplaces report (2020). She also leads the Commission’s collaborative project on cultural reform with the Australian Defence Force.
Prior to joining the Commission, Kate spent three years as the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commissioner, 20 years as lead equal opportunity partner with Herbert Smith Freehills’ and many years serving on the boards of Berry Street Victoria, Heide Museum of Modern Art and Carlton Football Club.
Deputy Chair of the Board of Beyond Blue
Mrs Kate Carnell, AO, FAICD, FAIM is a company director and small business advisor. Kate has extensive experience and knowledge in the business sector, having run her own small businesses for 15 years before becoming ACT Chief Minister in 1995 for a five year period.
Kate completed her five year term as the inaugural Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) in March 2021. Prior to her appointment as the inaugural ASBFEO, Kate held the position of CEO of the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, which represents more than 300,000 businesses across Australia. She has also served as CEO of beyondblue, CEO of the Australian Food and Grocery Council, CEO of the Australian General Practice Network (AGPN) and CEO of the National Association of Forest Industries (NAFI).
A pharmacist by profession, Kate was the inaugural chair of the ACT Branch of the Pharmacy Guild of Australia and the first female to become the National Vice-President of the Pharmacy Guild of Australia.
Kate was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2006 for her services to the community through contributions to economic development and support for the business sector, knowledge industries, the medical sector and medical technology advances.
The 2021 Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians Conference will be a hybrid event with both in-person and online delegate options.
Attend in person
The CWP Conference will be held in person at the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory, Darwin
Experience all the key elements of the conference through the Virtual Attendee Hub. You will also be able to explore live content, interact in live-streamed Q&A discussions and engage virtually with other delegates.
We recommend accommodation at a number of properties currently available and within walking distance from the conference venue. To enquire about or confirm a reservation, follow the instructions below to liaise directly with the property. Please note that rooms are not holding and as rates are subject to availability at the time of booking, they may increase. It is recommended you book early to avoid disappointment.
H on Mitchell
105 Mitchell Street, Darwin NT 0800
H on Mitchell is a 5 star hotel located on Mitchell Street in the heart of Darwin's business and entertainment precinct.
Distance from conference venue: 1km walk to Legislative Assembly
Studio Rooms at this property start at $175 per night, room only. Please call or email using the above details to secure your reservation.
Novotel Darwin CBD
100 The Esplanade, Darwin NT 0800
The Novotel Darwin CBD is a 4 star hotel ideally located on the city's Esplanade overlooking Darwin Harbour.
Distance from conference venue: 800m walk to Legislative Assembly
Standard City View Rooms at this property start at $306 per night, room only. Please call or email using the above details to secure your reservation.
Rydges Darwin Central
21 Knuckey Street, Darwin NT 0801
Rydges Darwin Central is a 4 star hotel located in the middle of the CBD with plenty of cafes and restaurants within an easy walking distance.
Distance from conference venue: 450m walk to Legislative Assembly
Standard Rooms at Rydges Darwin Central start at $280 per night, room only. Please call or email using the above details to secure your reservation.