Sydney, 17 March 2019 - Women’s Electoral Lobby (WEL) and National Foundation for Australian Women (NFAW).

Recently both organisations were notified by the Australian Government of their exclusion from the Federal Budget lockup on 2 April. 

WEL National Convenor, Jozefa Sobski AM and NFAW President, Kate Gunn.

“For more than a decade, this has been an annual opportunity for our examination of the budget to prepare the NFAW Gender Lens Budget Analysis, a focussed report on the Budget’s commitment to Australian women and the shortfalls.”

“We are extremely disappointed by the Morrison Government’s decision to exclude Australia’s leading non- partisan women’s groups from the Federal Budget night lockup.”

“Clearly the Treasurer has decided to obstruct access to information and to manipulate who attends and what gets discussed. In a time when Australians in every electorate have a heightened awareness of women’s equality and their right to participate, Treasurer Frydenberg has taken this absurd decision. 

The NFAW Gender Lens report this year will be looking to understand the Government’s policy and funding commitments to women. It will focus on key issues facing vulnerable women including financial insecurity which is causing increasing levels of women's homelessness, the inadequacy of Newstart and the ripple effects on young women’s opportunities in life, and the onerous conditions being placed on sole parent payments, to name a few. 

“Locking key independent women’s groups out is a further example of the Government’s inability to be inclusive, gender sensitive and consultative." 

“One wonders if the Prime Minister’s recent comments about equality for women, ‘of the basis of others doing worse’, has become the instructions to his Treasurer on access for women’s rights groups on Budget night.

NFAW and WEL will work to deliver the Gender Lens report in a timely manner, despite being locked out.