Australian Bar Association marks 2021 International Women’s Day

09 March 2021

The Australian Bar Association (ABA) marks International Women’s Day by celebrating women’s achievement in the law, acknowledging the challenges which women continue to face within the profession, and reiterating its commitment to fostering a respectful and inclusive environment for all at the Australian Bar.

President of the ABA, Matthew Howard SC, said, “In addition to the pandemic, this has been a challenging year for the legal profession, as reports of incidents and culture from our country’s highest court down and extending through all workplaces demonstrate. The ABA and its member Bars recognise the work that is still to be done and are working hard to ensure equality of opportunity at the Bar, without discrimination, harassment or sexual harassment. We call on all members of the ABA to #ChooseToChallenge.”

Kate Eastman SC, Chair of the ABA’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee said, “It is important on International Women’s Day to mark both the achievements of institutions in fostering a respectful and inclusive environment in which women can than thrive, but also challenging those cultures and behaviours that set us back. That’s why, on International Women’s Day 2021, we reiterate the commitment we made last year in adopting the ABA’s Diversity and Inclusion Principles, and in 2021 have embarked on a new campaign to address the obstacles to gender equality at the Bar and in the administration of justice.”

In February 2020, the ABA adopted and released Diversity and Inclusion Principles. The Principles are here. In February 2021, the ABA launched a series of podcasts to address the cultural issues that perpetuate sexual harassment at the Bar. The first of the podcasts is here.

About the ABA

The Australian Bar Association is the peak body representing nearly 6,000 barristers throughout Australia. Established in 1963, the ABA is committed to serving, promoting and representing its members, as well as advocating for fair and equal justice for all.

MEDIA ENQUIRIES: or call Elizabeth Gray on 0401 561 554.