• FWX Dec qtr 2023  75.5
  • FWX yr-o-yr  1
  • FWX qtr-o-qtr  2
  • ASX 200 Boards years to equality  6.3
  • Underemployment years to equality  21
  • Superannuation years to equality  17.7
  • Gender pay gap years to equality  21.9
  • Employment years to equality  27.5
  • Unpaid work years to equality  46.1
  • Education years to equality  389

The Budget hits and misses on Gender Equality

The 2024 Federal Budget delivered some hits and misses on economic gender equality, but on the whole, progress is being made.
Financy
May 15, 2024

We’ve summarised the 2024 Federal Budget into key findings and the hits and misses that are likely to be most relevant to achieving economic gender equality.

For context, it’s important to remember that this is the first May Budget since we had the release of the National (10 year) Strategy for Gender Equality so the hope was that we would see the Albanese Government build upon that.

Here’s the big hits:

  1. $952 million to support women leaving violent partners – this couldn’t be more timely with already 28 women killed this year.
  2. $1.1 billion for superannuation payments on government funded paid parental leave – this had already been announced and is due to take effect 1 July 2025.

Here’s the big misses:

No funding was included in the Budget to drive an education and media campaign that addresses the systemic issues that fuel gender based violence. This a significant oversight because without dealing with the causes of domestic violence, and stopping intergenerational violence, more lives will continue to be lost and a greater toll this will take on improving gender equal outcomes.

The government has reaffirmed its commitment to funding a wage increase for early childhood educators and care workers but did not allocate specific funding for this in the Budget.  Wages increases in this area would go someway to helping narrow the overall national gender pay gap.

The 2024 Federal Budget has certainly delivered some hits in an uncertain economic environment, but there is no getting away from it, more could have been done to have addresses the national crisis on domestic violence.

The risk is that the longer Australian women experience the fear of domestic violence either directly or indirectly – due to a national crisis – the greater the setback on gender equality progress. 

 

Here’s the details worth looking closer at

Domestic violence funding

This is an about time investment as Australian is in the midst of a national crisis on domestic violence with 28 women already killed this year.

  • $925.2 million in funding will go towards establishing a Leaving Violence Program (LVP) over five years
  • $109.9 million in funding will go to the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission to support enhanced collaboration and information sharing where its hoped to prevent perpetrators doing harm before harm happens.
  • $44.1 million to support the National Legal Assistance Partnership and Family Violence Prevention Legal Services.

In addition the $1 billion increase to the National Housing Infrastructure Facility will also be targeted to support housie for women and children experiencing domestic abuse.

 

Superannuation funding

As it stands women retire with at least 30% less than men come retirement age. To help close this gap the government has previously committed, and now repeated that $1.1 billion over four years will be spent to ensure that Australian parents who take parental leave are paid superannuation payments on any government payments.

Currently families, mainly women, receive 20 weeks of paid parental leave, which is paid at the national minimum wage of $882.75 per week. Leave can be shared by both parents.

From 1 July 2025, the amount of leave parents can access will increase to 22 weeks. It will continue to gradually increase each year until it reaches 26 weeks in July 2026.

 

Employment opportunities funding

The government has reaffirmed its commitment to reducing gender stereotypes in male-dominated sectors and to opening up opportunities for women in higher paying areas.

$55.6 million over four years will be spent to improve women’s access to work and training in male-dominated fields and $38.2 million over eight years to attract women to careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

 

Financy covers gender finance, diversity, inclusion and ESG issues. We advocate for gender equity change through the Women’s Index report and help businesses take action on DEI through tech solutions like IMPACTER.

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Financy
May 15, 2024
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