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South Australian plan to get more women involved in sport

South Australian plan to get more women involved in sport
December 9, 2016

A new plan to improve gender equality in sport in South Australia and increase the number of spectators who attend women’s sporting events has been released.

Launched yesterday at the the Adelaide Striker’s season launch and Women in Sport Breakfast, the South Australian Women in Sport Taskforce Action Plan 2016 -18 intends to address key issues facing women in sport, including:

• Stopping high school and primary school students from dropping out of sports; 
• Creating opportunities for businesses to better collaborate with sportswomen; 
• Providing advice for female athletes on contract negotiations; 
• Attracting more women’s sporting events to South Australia; 
• Removing cultural barriers for women in sport; 
• Increasing the number of women on sports boards and as chief executives of sporting organisations. 

Introducing the plan Assistant Minister to the South Australian Premier Katrine Hildyard says the initiative aims to change the "appalling" statistics about gender equality in sport, stating “it is time to ensure that girls and women can pursue whatever sporting pathway they choose ...  to address gender inequality in sport in pay, conditions, sponsorship, board make up and spectatorship so that girls and women can equally and actively participate in every aspect of their chosen sport.”

Established in 2015, the South Australian Women in Sport Taskforce aims to improve gender equality, change the face of sport leadership, increase spectators and fans for women’s sport, attract women’s sporting events and broadly align sport strategy and diplomacy with cultural events.

The Taskforce complements South Australian Government’s Achieving Women’s Equality policy, which “aims to eliminate barriers and to acknowledge the central role women and girls play in our economy and community".

Assistant Minister Hildyard “Our plan is measurable and timebound and every Taskforce member is determined that we will not be talking about the appalling statistics about gender inequality in sport in the future, that we turn these statistics around.

“Whether a girl or woman wants to write about sport, participate at the highest level, administer it, coach it or make a career out of it, we must remove structural barriers to them being able to do so and we must support and celebrate their efforts."

South Australia is already hosting a growing list of women’s sporting events, including the WBBL and T20 Cricket, the ISPS Handa Women’s Australia Golf Open, the Women’s Tour Down Under and the International Netball Quad Series.

Featuring Australia’s Ambassador for Women’s and Girls, Natasha Stott Despoja, the Adelaide Striker’s season launch and Women in Sport Breakfast included examples of how women’s sport can break down gender barriers while also previewing the Striker’s Women's Big Bash League (WBBL) season ahead. 

Images: Masters Games netball action at the Priceline (Netball SA) Stadium (top) and the Adelaide Striker’s WBBL squad (below).

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