Balanced Boards Make Better Decisions

Under the Andrews Labor Government, no less than 50 per cent of all future appointments to paid Government boards and Victorian courts will be women.

Speaking at Victorian Labor’s State Conference today, Premier Daniel Andrews said the move will make sure our public institutions actually represent the Victorian public.

While the Labor Government has a record number of women in Cabinet, female representation on government boards in Victoria has dropped from 40 per cent to 35.6 per cent over the last four years.

An aspirational target currently exists within the Victorian Government to make sure board appointments are balanced. It was implemented in 2009 but it isn’t working – because it isn’t enforced.

Under the move announced today, Ministers will be responsible for ensuring all appointments meet the new requirements, which apply to all paid government boards and the Supreme, County and Magistrates’ courts.

Women make up 80 per cent of the workforce in the health and social care industry, but make up less than a quarter of the board of Melbourne Health.

Women also make up less than a quarter of the boards of Treasury Corporation and the Country Fire Authority, and less than a fifth of the board of Public Transport Victoria.

Melbourne University has proportionally fewer female Council members than any other university in Australia.

Boards that properly represent the public make better decisions, reach into a deeper pool of talent, and train more people from different backgrounds to become economic leaders of our state.

Quotes attributable to Daniel Andrews, Premier of Victoria

“Many of the boardrooms of our public bodies are lacking a balance of skills and a balance of views, because they’re lacking perhaps the most important balance of all.” 

“I’m sick of walking into meetings and seeing a room full of blokes sitting around a table. How does that guarantee the best decisions? How does that influence the culture of an organisation for the better?”

“Outcomes for women start with attitudes toward women.”

“Of all the appointments my government makes from now on, at least one half of them will be women. Under this Government, equality is not negotiable.”