The Andrews Labor Government is supporting more Victorian women to develop their leadership, management and negotiation skills through the Joan Kirner Emerging Leaders Program.
As both the first and only woman to become Premier in Victoria, and the former Member for Williamstown, Joan Kirner AC was a hard-working representative of Melbourne’s West and Williamstown in the Victorian Parliament, and a resident of Williamstown until her death in 2015.
Minister for Women Gabrielle Williams opened the first round of applications for the program last week, which honours the legacy of the late Joan Kirner AC.
Women continue to face structural barriers that prevent them from participating equally in the workforce, such as unconscious bias, gender stereotypes and a lack of workplace flexibility. The program is one of a range of initiatives designed to progress gender equality and improve women’s representation.
The program supports women aged 22 – 40 to advance their careers by providing them with the strategies and skills they need to pursue leadership opportunities. The program’s first round is open to women across all industries.
A second round, set to open in late June, will focus on women employed in non-traditional and male-dominated industries, given the challenges women experience in career advancement in those industries. The program will support women from diverse backgrounds who can face additional barriers in leadership.
The Member for Williamstown, Melissa Horne MP said that “Joan Kirner was a trailblazer as a woman in public life and a strong advocate for constituents of Williamstown, and I strongly encourage any young women living in the Williamstown electorate to apply to take part in this rewarding leadership program.”
The program will run from 27 June to 18 November. Women will be supported to access this year’s program with reimbursements for childcare, accommodation, and travel costs.