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Who scores with women?

Media Release 18 September 1998

The Women's Electoral Lobby today released its scorecard on both the major parties for the upcoming election. The scorecard is based both on past performance and future promises, and neither party scores particularly well.

"Based on past performance both parties have a lot of improving to do," said Kathleen Swinbourne, spokesperson for the Women's Electoral Lobby. "Unfortunately, the launch of their Women's Policies would indicate that neither party has in fact learned very much at all!"

"Based on future promises it seems that the Labor Party's resounding defeat at the last election has at least taught them something, but the Coalition is not improving at all," said Ms Swinbourne. "We hope that both parties will use this scorecard to see where they are going wrong, and what it is that women want from the government."

"The scorecard is important because as far as women are concerned this is not a single issue election. There are a lot of important issues for women, not just tax, and women want to make sure that all parties realise that."

WEL will be distributing their scorecard to women around the country so that they can make an informed decision when casting their vote. A further scorecard on minor parties is in the pipeline for use with Senate voting.

"The way you vote in the Senate is just as important as the House of Representatives. You can use your Senate vote to ensure we don't have an elected dictatorship and to temper the policies of your party of choice. No party ever has a mandate to implement all their policies unchanged," said Ms Swinbourne.

WEL's scoring ranges from a low of minus four for policies that are highly detrimental to women up to a high of plus four to indicate policies that have a positive effect on women and their lives.

"Women make up 52% of the population of Australia and their needs and interests cannot be ignored. Bill Clinton and Tony Blair both won government by focusing on women's needs, not just narrow economic policies. All parties in Australia would do well to remember that," said Ms Swinbourne.

More detailed information on the basis for scores is available via the scorecard page.

For further information please contact:

Kathleen Swinbourne | Eva Cox
Helen Leonard

WEL Australia
Ph: 02 62476679 Fax: 02 62474669

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Page created 18 September 1998; last updated 20 September 1998