Higher education sector commits to preserve gender equity during and after COVID-19

17 June 2020

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A growing number of SAGE members and sector partners have signed a statement pledging their commitment to preserve gender equity as a higher education priority during the crisis and recovery period of the COVID-19 pandemic, a further sign of the sector’s leadership and commitment to gender equity.

The position statement follows the publication of a report in May by the Rapid Research Information Forum which found hard-won gains for women’s advancement in STEM workforce were at risk of a major setback due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

SAGE is a proud supporter of the Joint Sector Position Statement, along with sector partners including the Australian Academy of Science and the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering.

All tertiary institutions and higher education sector partners are invited to sign the Statement: “Preserving Gender Equity as a Higher Education Priority During and After COVID-19”.

The Statement, prepared by the Higher Education Senior Equity Practitioners Advisory Group on Gender and COVID-19, acknowledges the gendered impacts of the pandemic and declares the sector commitment to immediate and ongoing gender equity actions.

These actions include:

  1. To actively seek equal representation of women in COVID-19 response planning and decision-making.
  2. To formally monitor and report on gender equity impacts (including intersectional factors), and collaborate with other universities and sector partners to address emerging issues.
  3. To continue participation in the SAGE Athena SWAN
  4. To maintain gender equity and diversity programs and key performance indicators.
  5. To preserve their gender equity progress made to date.

For further information and to sign the Statement, contact:

Michelle Falconer, Senior Manager, Office of Equity and Diversity, Western Sydney University

Dr Kieryn McKay, SAGE Project Coordinator, Western Sydney University

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