Australian High Commission


                                          MEDIA RELEASE

                                                                  17 August 2017

Australian Advocate and UN Adviser for Gender Equality visits Sri Lanka to Engage Public and Private Sector Leaders

Prominent Australian gender equality advocate Elizabeth Broderick (AO) has visited Sri Lanka to engage business and public leaders on the important issue of promoting gender equality.

Ms Broderick met with business leaders, including members of the Prime Minister’s taskforce on female workforce participation, to discuss the business case for gender equality. Ms Broderick also met with senior members of the Sri Lankan Police and Defence Forces to share experiences of building cultural change within Australia’s Police and Defence Force agencies.

Ms Broderick, a former Australian Sex Discrimination Commissioner (2007-15), is the Global Co-Chair of UN Global Compact Women’s Empowerment Principles, Special Adviser to Under-Secretary UN Women on Private Sector Engagement, and Founder of the ‘Male Champions of Change’ initiative – working with influential male leaders to become advocates for gender equality.

In welcoming the visit, Deputy High Commissioner Mr Tim Huggins said “Australia is fully committed to increasing women’s leadership, women’s economic empowerment and addressing violence against women and girls.

“Australia’s aid investments in Sri Lanka are designed to ensure that women benefit from all our economic growth-related programs. Ms Broderick’s visit and her engagement with private sector leaders will encourage the development of policies that maximise the participation of women in Sri Lanka’s economy,” Mr Huggins added.

Ms Broderick welcomed the opportunity to meet with Sri Lanka’s private sector leaders and prominent women representatives.

“I am excited to be meeting with business leaders and other influential men and women to share innovative strategies, learn from each other and discuss how to accelerate the pace of change” Ms Broderick said. “Women’s participation in all aspects of Sri Lanka’s economy is critical to realising its economic potential.”

The Economist listed Ms Broderick as one of the World’s Top 50 diversity figures in public life in 2015, alongside His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Barack Obama, and Bill Gates.

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