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International Women’s Day

March 8, 2012 by staff 

International Women’s Day, PLAY rugby, become miners, broker peace in conflict zones and don’t post n*de videos of other people, are some of the messages for women on International Women’s Day. A report card gave Julia Gillard an “A” for effort as Australia’s first female Prime Minister, but the Australian Graduate School of Management (AGSM) also sounded warnings for the Labor leader.

It praised her conflict management, for making legislative change and re-engaging with the public service in Canberra.

But AGSM executive director Rosemary Howard says Ms Gillard is facing a similar problem to those of other women in top roles – being judged in terms of male leadership qualities.

“Here is a leader who has successfully managed a complex minority government to achieve a remarkable amount of legislative change in a short period of time,” Professor Howard said.

“Yet her public persona revolves around commentary and cartoons on her hair, voice, earlobes, nose and marital status, rather than on achievements as the first female PM of this country.

“The reality is that women in leadership roles are judged by different and often more superficial standards than their male peers.”

Queensland Premier Anna Bligh used a women’s day breakfast to trumpet Labor’s same-sex civil union reforms, as the man who could repeal them, Liberal National Party leader Campbell Newman, watched on.

Mr Newman promised 500 scholarships for women if he wins the Queensland election.

Federal Opposition Leader Tony Abbott was also out touting for votes, promoting his paid parental leave policy and promising a Coalition government would give protection visas to at least 1000 at-risk refugee women and their dependants every year.

Bob Katter’s Australian Party was making promises about respect.

The party’s state leader Aidan McLindon was up in arms about a YouTube video that shows the faces of candidates Sarah Henry, Lynette Bishop, Terri Bell and Margaret Waterman superimposed on n*ked women’s bodies walking down a street with Mr Katter.

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