Hon Simone McGurk BA(Arts) BA(Comms) MLA

Hon Simone McGurk BA(Arts) BA(Comms) MLA

Minister for Child Protection; Women's Interests; Prevention of Family and Domestic Violence; Community Services

    Report card shows women workforce participation at record highs

    4/08/2022 10:00 AM
     
    • New Women's Report Card provides a snapshot of the status of women in 2022
    • Women in the workforce reaches 64.5 per cent with societal attitudes changing
    • Proportion of women on State Government Boards and committees is now 52.5 per cent

    The State Government has released its 2022 Women's Report Card, showing how far Western Australian women have progressed in terms of leadership, economic independence, safety and justice, and health and wellbeing.

     

    The Report Card is used as a research tool that inform policy to improve outcomes for women.

     

    The snapshot is released every three years and is produced by the Department of Communities in partnership with the Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre.

     

    While this report shows that progress is being made in many areas, it recognises that barriers for women still persist. 

     

    Promisingly, women's workforce participation has increased with the number of women in the Western Australian workforce reaching a record high of 64.5 per cent.

     

    51.5 per cent of women work full-time, in comparison to 82.6 per cent for employed men, with a 12-percentage point increase in the use of childcare in the period. Enabling women to participate equally in the community, including at leadership levels, is a priority area of Stronger Together: WA's Plan for Gender Equality, which was launched in March 2020.

     

    The snapshot also shows the Government is leading the way in progressing greater gender equality. In 2021, the proportion of women on State Government boards and committees exceeded 50 per cent (52.5 per cent) for the first time in WA.

     

    WA's gender pay gap is down, but continues to be the highest nationally, at 21.2 per cent across all industries, down from 28.2 per cent since 2011.

     

    However, women continue to face a significantly higher risk of violence than men, particularly sexual and family and domestic violence.

     

    Statistics from the 2022 Women's Report Card include:

    • women's workforce participation rate is 64.5 per cent - this is the highest ever rate for women in WA;
    • the proportion of employed women working full-time in WA is 51.5 per cent, in comparison to 82.6 per cent for employed men in WA;
    • however, WA's gender pay gap is 21.2 per cent across all industries, down from 28.2 per cent in 2011, but higher than that reported nationally;
    • women's representation in CEO positions across Australian companies and the community sector has increased;
    • 59.5 per cent of university graduates are female, and have exceeded male graduates since 1985 particularly in the areas of law and accounting;
    • teenage women giving birth in WA fell 26.6 per cent since 2016;
    • cancer is the leading cause of death for women in WA;
    • women continue to face a significantly higher risk of violence than men, particularly sexual and family and domestic violence with a 21 per cent increase in sexual assaults reported to WA police; and
    • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women account for 68 per cent of hospitalisations due to family and domestic violence in WA.

    To view the 2022 Women's Report Card and online data platform, visit: www.womensreportcard.communities.wa.gov.au

     

    Comments attributed to Women's Interests Minister Simone McGurk:

     

    "This year's women's report card shows there has been good progress in the areas of public sector leadership and economic independence for women in WA.

     

    "It is encouraging to see that more organisations realise that greater diversity and having more women in leadership roles is good for business.

     

    "Industry can play a role in removing barriers for women so they can pursue higher paying careers that have traditionally been male-dominated.

     

    "There is no doubt there is still plenty of work to do. Women remain at significantly higher risk of violence than men - and the gender pay gap is unacceptable.

     

    "Long-lasting cultural change takes time and commitment across all sectors of the community. This Government is leading the way by creating change within the public sector and also through actions and initiatives to influence our stakeholders and the communities we support."

     

    Comments attributed to Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre Research Fellow and Women's Report Card researcher Dr Silvia Salazar:

     

    "This year's report shows there is now greater gender equality in leadership in the public sector. In 2021, the proportion of women on State Government boards and committees exceeded 50 per cent (52.5 per cent) for the first time in Western Australia.

     

    "By comparison, at the national level, private sector organisations still have a long way to go, with the proportion of women board members currently sitting at 33.4 per cent in 2021."

     

    Minister's office - 6552 6600