Founded in 1972, WEL is proud of its many years of feminist advocacy and its significant wins for women in Australia. We have played a role in important policy changes such as the:

  • The introduction of the equal pay for work of equal value principle in 1972, which said women should be awarded the male rate of pay, no matter what job they performed;
  • Legitimisation, policy development, legislative reform and community education programs on issues such as equal opportunity, sexual harassment and domestic violence;
  • Drafting and implementation of state anti-discrimination and federal sex discrimination legislation; and
  • Rape law reform, which has gradually led to significant amendments to the NSW Crimes Act.

Joan Bielski wrote The History, Organisation and Achievements of WEL NSW that charts WEL's achievements up until 2004.