Wiyi Yani U Thangani National Summit to amplify the voices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and girls

The Morrison Government will invest $2.8 million over three years to deliver the final stage of the Wiyi Yani U Thangani (Women’s Voices) Project.

This will include a national summit chaired by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner June Oscar AO that will focus on women’s leadership and decision making, as well as addressing family, domestic and sexual violence.

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Women Marise Payne said the summit responded to one of the seven overarching recommendations of Wiyi Yani U Thangani (Women’s Voices) Report 2020.

“On International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women it is important that as a Government and as a country we reaffirm our commitment to prioritising the lived experiences of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and girls,” Minister Payne said.

“The Wiyi Yani U Thangani National Summit will be an opportunity to empower women’s leadership at the local level and provide a national platform for healing intergenerational trauma and action to eradicate racism.

“It will equip women and girls with the skills to be future leaders and support the design of place-based approaches for their communities.”

Minister for Indigenous Australians Ken Wyatt said the investment would also fund a research project to identify effective strengths based programs and approaches for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and girls.

“The research will be used as the evidence base to help guide discussions at the national summit as well as providing a number of best practice examples,” Minister Wyatt said.

Minister for Women’s Safety Anne Ruston said the Government was committed to a First Nation’s Action Plan to end violence against Aboriginal and Torres Strait women and children.

“The Action Plan will be the primary mechanism for implementing Closing the Gap Target 13 to reduce the rate of all forms of family violence and abuse against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and children by at least by 50 per cent by 2031,” Minister Ruston said.

“Work through the Wiyi Yani U Thangani (Women’s Voices) Project will underpin the Action Plan.

“Commissioner Oscar and Professor Marcia Langton have also been appointed as special advisors to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Council on family, domestic and sexual violence which is steering the development of the Action Plan.

“As policy makers we must hear, recognise and include the voices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and empower them to develop and deliver programs for their communities.”

According to the most recent Personal Safety Survey, 1 in 7 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women had experienced physical violence in the past 12 months. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women are 32 times more likely to be hospitalised as a result of that violence than non-indigenous women.

More information about the Wiyi Yani U Thangani (Women’s Voices) Project is available at Wiyi Yani U Thangani (Women’s Voices) | (humanrights.gov.au)