Armidale woman Rechelle Leahy will be part of an Australian delegation of women who will travel to New York this month to attend the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW62).
Eleven women from the the National Rural Women’s Coalition will attend the forum, which will examine challenges and opportunities in achieving gender equality and the empowerment of rural women and girls
Ms Leahy, an experienced executive manager, director, committee and board member, has held significant leadership roles in central agencies including several years with immigration and finance portfolios.
“I am passionate about governance and social policy related issues, especially those of rural, regional and remote women and I continue to seek to be part of the national conversation on these matters,” Ms Leahy said.
There will be a focus on participation in and access of women to the media and information and communications technologies and their impact on and use as an instrument for the advancement and empowerment of women.
Minister for Women, Kelly O’Dwyer, will lead the Australian Government’s Delegation which also includes Ambassador for Women and Girls Dr Sharman Stone, Sex Discrimination Commissioner Kate Jenkins, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner, June Oscar AO and two civil society delegates Dr Pat Hamilton and Jo Stewart-Rattray.
To prepare for the UN Commission the NRWC hosted two webinars in 2017 to engage rural women in the submission made to the Australian Government on the CSW62 theme.
The NRWC has also been part of a broader consultation through the National Women’s Alliances International Engagement Forum in October 2017 and the CSW pre-departure briefing which was held in Melbourne last month.
Ms Leahy said the group would be making two presentations while attending the Commission in New York – one on Family Violence and one on e-learning to advance rural women.
NRWC president Cr Friedersdorff is also speaking on leadership with the Australian Government’s presentation at the United Nations.
Understanding the importance of keeping rural Australian women engaged and informed about CWS62, the NRWC will post videos and photos daily of the delegation’s activities and will then invite Rural Regional and Remote women to attend a webinar where the learnings from the 62nd session of the Commission will be discussed.
“We are keen to ensure that future NRWC work in Regional Rural and Remote Australia towards gender equality highlights the globally recognised Sustainable Development Goals,” Ms Leahy said.