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International Women's Day - A Statement from the President

08 March 2019


8 March marks International Women’s Day, a day of global awareness that celebrates women’s achievements in social, economic, cultural and political spheres. The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists strives for excellence in women’s healthcare and  RANZCOG recognises our responsibility to consistently advocate for women and their families.

There was a time when gender, race, colour, religion or sexuality precluded a person from professions, social engagement, relationships and parenting. I want to be part of a different community, one that not only respects diversity, but values and embraces it.

RANZCOG believes that every person, regardless of their gender, sexual orientation, race, religion or ethnicity has the right to high-quality medical care. Women and girls make up more than half the Australian population and form the majority of health service providers and carers in our society. They are central to the health of our nation. Disparities in women’s health outcomes have their genesis in various medical, social and economic determinants. The College supports an expansive approach to understanding and improving the health of women in Australia and New Zealand.

Within our own College, we are working to ensure equitable representation of all genders in leadership roles. We want to promote an inclusive culture in which all members feel able to participate in all aspects of College work, one in which women are provided with genuine opportunities to engage and participate positively and with regard to their own well-being.

Movement from existing norms is challenging, confronting and occasionally distressing. Accepting existing norms when they disenfranchise others, limit their opportunities and deprive individuals and society of the skills and contribution of women is unacceptable. Leaders must be prepared to challenge existing paradigms, both internal and external. We want to shine a light on the imbalances that prevent women from reaching their fullest potential, to forge a #balanceforbetter.

On International Women’s Day, I want to express my gratitude, admiration and respect to our mothers, sisters, daughters, friends and colleagues, the women who hold up half the sky. We look forward to a future that genuinely values women and affords them equal opportunity, a future that will benefit us all.
 



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