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‘Numbers too big to ignore’: Women’s March 4 Justice rallies take place across the country

MML
Article image for ‘Numbers too big to ignore’: Women’s March 4 Justice rallies take place across the country

Tens of thousands of protesters have hit the streets across Australia on Monday as part of the Women’s March 4 Justice rally.

In Canberra, a petition demanding action on gendered violence will be presented at federal Parliament.

The petition calls for investigations into gendered violence, more public funding for gendered violence prevention, and a federal Gender Equality Act.

March organisers have rejected a meeting with Prime Minister Scott Morrison in his office, and they are calling for him to come and speak to them at the rally outside federal Parliament.

CEO of Gender Equity Victoria, Tanya Kovac, spoke to Neil Mitchell while on the way to Canberra.

She said it’s “absolutely important” that Mr Morrison speaks to organisers at the rally.

“All these people are making this huge effort today … it’s absolutely important that he comes out. It’s such a short walk,” she said.

“I think it’s a missed opportunity for him to show leadership.”

Ms Kovac said protesters will “turn up in numbers too big to ignore”.

“We have got parliamentarians on all sides of politics who have been behaving in ways that are just completely offensive,” she said.

“We clearly have not been doing the cultural change in schools, we have not been doing the cultural change in workplaces, and we have not even been doing the cultural change in Parliament.

“We have to teach people that the norm is gender equality. Therefore, marginalising women, hurting women, keeping them out of decision-making spaces, including in the home, that’s not normal.

“Please listen to us. Please act. Please make the laws that are going to protect women.”

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