Sunday, February 28, 2021
Politics

Australia news live: Covid vaccine rollout begins; more questions over rape allegations | Australia news

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We need to dismantle the culture that has allowed so many to get away with so much for so long, a culture that blames victims, as the prime minister did last week, for getting themselves into vulnerable situations, getting themselves into vulnerable situations.

A culture that sees women’s worth only in relation to men as daughters, or as wives, not as individuals, worthy of value, irrespective of our relationship with a man, a culture that closes its eyes when powerful men use abuse and discard women and rarely suffer consequences, even retain their ministries, a culture that adds a bonk ban to the ministerial standards and yet washes its hands have further responsibility, a culture that allows Mr Craig Kelly’s adviser to remain on staff despite multiple allegations of highly inappropriate conduct.

Yes, we need a comprehensive review of the compliance process, and an independent body so that no one feels as Brittany Higgins did, that making the complaint would end their career, but we also need an enforceable code of conduct binding senators, and members and senior staff to the highest standards of behaviour, and for there to be genuine consequences when we fail to meet those standards.

But more than that, we need to systematically unpick the misogyny, the inequality, the privilege that creates a culture in which what happened to Brittany Higgins, to Rachelle Miller to Chelsey Potter to Dhanya Mani, and to so many others is downplayed as “just what happens in parliament”.



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