Australia's Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment strategy applies across all work undertaken by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
Australia's Ambassador for Gender Equality, Ms Julie-Ann Guivarra, works to ensure that gender equality and empowerment of women and girls is a central focus of Australia's diplomatic, development and regional security efforts.
The Ambassador for Gender Equality advocates internationally for women's equal participation in political, economic and social affairs. The Ambassador advances global development, peace and stability by promoting gender equality and women's leadership and decision-making at all levels.
Follow the Ambassador for Gender Equality on Twitter
UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW)
Australia advocates for international standards and norms on gender equality in a range of multilateral forums. As a sign of our commitment to promote gender equality and end discrimination against women and girls, Australia nominated Ms Natasha Stott Despoja for the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), who was elected into the Committee on 9 November 2020. Ms Stott Despoja was the sole candidate from Oceania. This is the first time Australia has served on the Committee in almost thirty years. View the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Women's media release on the candidacy.
UNSCR1325 on Women Peace and Security +20
In addition, the Australian Ambassador for Gender Equality, Julie-Ann Guivarra, hosted a panel discussion ’20 Years of the Women Peace and Security agenda: Where are we Now?’ on 3 November 2020 with former UN Under-Secretary General and Initiator of the precursor decision leading to UNSCR1325 as President of the UNSC in March 2000, Ambassador Anwarul K Chowdhury, Commander of UN Forces in Cyprus, Major General Cheryl Pearce, and Director of the International Program at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI), Ms Lisa Sharland, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the UNSCR1325 on Women Peace and Security on 31 October 2000. Be inspired: 20 Years of the Women, Peace and Security Agenda: Where Are We Now?
Australian Statement: High-level meeting on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the Fourth World Conference on Women, delivered by Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Women Senator the Honourable Marise Payne, 1 October 2020 [Word 23 KB] | [PDF 115 KB] | Video:
45th Session of the Human Rights Council
Dignitary Address by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Women Senator the Honourable Marise Payne, 14 September 2020 [Word 25 KB] | Video:
44th Session of the Human Rights Council
Australian Statement: Panel COVID-19 and the Rights of Women and Girls, delivered by Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Women Senator the Honourable Marise Payne, 14 July 2020 [Word 119 KB] | [PDF 131 KB] | Video:
Australian Statement: Interactive Dialogue with the Working Group on the Elimination of discrimination against women and girls, delivered by the Ambassador for Gender Equality Julie-Ann Guivarra, 7 July 2020 [Word 121 KB] | [PDF 77 KB] | Video:
International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women(IDEVAW)
Message from the Ambassador for Gender Equality Julie-Ann Guivarra and fellow Ambassadors from across the region to mark International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and the start of 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, 25 November 2020 [Word 21 KB] | [PDF 138 KB] Video:
Pacific Women Leaders’ Meeting
Pacific Women Leaders met virtually on 29 May 2020 to discuss the gender implications of COVID-19 within the Pacific region.
Joint Statement by the co-convenors of a meeting of Pacific Women Leaders, Australian Foreign Minister and Minister for Women Marise Payne, and Samoan Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Natural Resources and the Environment Fiame Naomi Mata’afa
Appointment of Ambassador for Gender Equality
On 8 March 2020, the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Women, Senator the Hon Marise Payne, announced Ms Julie-Ann Guivarra as Australia's Ambassador for Gender Equality.
The Ambassador for Gender Equality
In cooperation with the Australian Government Office for Women, the Ambassador for Gender Equality engages in international advocacy in support of Australian Government policies and programs to:
- Promote gender equality
- empower women and girls socially, politically and economically
- eradicate violence against women and girls
- eliminate discrimination against women and girls
- ensure better educational and health (including sexual and maternal health) opportunities and outcomes for women and girls
- eradicate trafficking in women and girls
- protect women and girls in conflict and promote the role of women in peace-building, and;
- enhance the participation of women in decision-making and leadership.
The Office of the Ambassador for Women and Girls was established by former Prime Minister Julia Gillard, former Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd and former Minister for the Status of Women Kate Ellis in September 2011. Ms Penny Williams was Australia's first Ambassador for Women and Girls, followed by Ms Natasha Stott-Despoja (2013-2016) and Dr Sharman Stone (2017-2019). On 8 March 2020 the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Women, Senator the Hon Marise Payne, announced a new Ambassador for Gender Equality, Ms Julie-Ann Guivarra. The creation of the Ambassador position reflects the Australian Government's active commitment to promote gender equality and to give women a stronger voice, particularly in the Indo-Pacific region.
Ms Julie-Ann Guivarra
Ambassador for Gender Equality
Mail: Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
255 London Circuit
Canberra City ACT 2601