In March 2009 Australia participated in the 53rd session of United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) in New York. This year the Commission considered:
Priority theme: the equal sharing of responsibilities between women and men, including care giving in the context of HIV/AIDS.
Review theme: equal participation of women and men in decision-making processes at all levels (adopted at 50th session of CSW).
The former Minister for the Status of Women, the Hon Tanya Plibersek MP led the Australian delegation to CSW 53 in the first week to further demonstrate the Australian Government's commitment to gender equality.
Ms Plibersek delivered Australia's Country Statement highlighting key initiatives it has taken over the past 12 months to strengthen gender equality.
The Australia delegation actively participated in formulating Agreed Conclusions, policy recommendations for the international community to advance gender equality.
For the first time, the Government funded an Aboriginal woman and an expert from the community sector to participate on the Australian delegation. This is an important step towards increasing the voice and capacity of Indigenous women and recognising the role the community sector plays in delivering services and providing practical advice for all Australian women.
The Australian Government and the Australian Human Rights Commission co-hosted a successful event to launch the short film Yajilarra. The film promotes the successful work of Aboriginal women in reducing alcohol consumption in their community of Fitzroy Valley in the remote Kimberley region of Western Australia. Two Indigenous women from the Marninwarntikura Fitzroy Women’s Resource Centre, supported by the Office for Women, attended CSW to share their experiences.