Dear Malcolm Turnbull,
The 9-to-5 was never designed with women in mind. And for thousands of women, especially those with babies and young children this out-dated system is simply not working.
As a nation we’ve invested literally billions of dollars every year into educating and training girls to join the workforce.
Yet the gender pay gap persists with women taking home an average of 18% less than men.
This then translates to 47% less in super, with women $90,000 short of men when they reach retirement age.
50% of pregnant women and mothers report facing discrimination which ranges from workplace bullying to being overlooked for promotions to forced redundancy.
What no-one told us when we were investing all that time and energy into getting a great ‘career’ was how hard it was going to be to keep that career once you became a working mother. It’s not surprising then that thousands of women are walking away from their corporate roles and converting their power, creativity and ideas into new enterprises at three times the rate of men. They are kissing their corporate careers goodbye and turning their back on the ‘so-called’ stability and security these positions were supposed to offer in search of freedom, flexibility, family time and financial independence.
Women entrepreneurs today have an unprecedented chance at having it all. They have opportunities and choices that their grandmothers never dreamed of. They are driving small business and leading the way in digital innovation. These women are generating millions of dollars for the Australian economy, creating better outcomes for themselves and their families, new employment opportunities for their communities, boosting business growth and increasing national productivity.
These women hold the potential to change the world. They are literally creating the blueprint for the future every day. Motherhood is so powerful. Research has uncovered that motherhood is also an incredibly creative time for many women, where the time and space of maternity leave and the simple rituals and routines of everyday life allow women the space to come up with new ideas and creative innovations.
The message is clear, it’s time for a new way of living, a new way of working and a new way of doing business. The world is ready for a huge cultural shift to more flexible working arrangements and the mumpreneur movement is leading the change.
But for these emerging businesses to survive there needs to be more support, education and resources and on behalf of the 330,000 Australian mums in business we would like to request a meeting with you to discuss this issue and how we can help Australia to lead the way in creating better outcomes for women.
Peace Mitchell & Katy Garner