Diverse Voices “Break The Bias” At Marie Claire’s International Women’s Day Event

Diverse Voices “Break The Bias” At Marie Claire’s International Women’s Day Event
B&T Magazine
Edited by B&T Magazine

Australia’s leading conversation-makers have spoken out on International Women’s Day to end gender inequality, stop workplace abuse and break the bias, in line with this year’s global IWD theme.

Marie Claire editor Nicky Briger hosted a panel of speakers including former political staffer Brittany Higgins, CEO Christine Holgate, Indigenous actor/advocate Miranda Tapsell and 2022 Australian of the Year Dylan Alcott for marie claire’s annual International Women’s Day breakfast held this morning at est. in Sydney.

 The annual breakfast event featured influential leaders who are bravely speaking out to champion change, including:

● Brittany Higgins – activist and author

● Christine Holgate – CEO and workplace safety advocate

● Miranda Tapsell – actor and author

● Dylan Alcott – Australian of the Year 2022, paralympian

● Lisa Wilkinson – journalist and author

● Chantelle Otten – psychosexologist and author

 Briger described 2021 as the year when women roared, “It was a year of rage and revelation, a tsunami of truth-telling as women across the country stood up and demanded an end to sexism, rape culture and harassment,” she told the gathering. “We champion the lives of extraordinary women across all our platforms, and today we’re thrilled to welcome our very first male panellist Dylan Alcott.”

Brittany Higgins said: “We’ve embraced the conversation in a way that it feels like people have been listened to,” she said. I’m very proud to be working with people like Grace (Tame) to try and drive things forward.”

She added that the government still needed to be pushed to take more action and that she thought it unlikely prime minister Scott Morrison would agree to meet with her.

 “I’d be willing if they come to the table,” she said. “I doubt he will have us to be honest. We come in the spirit of collaboration, but I think the easiest way to communicate with them is likely through the media.”

Tennis grand slam champion Dylan Alcott, who arrived with partner sexologist Chantelle Otten, defended Tame’s right to use her Australian of the Year award to make political points and denounced her critics.

  “Those people are idiots. I was so proud of what Grace did, she was always authentically herself, that is hard to do, especially when you’ve been through trauma. I really hated myself growing up with my disability and having to talk about your disability every day is hard. I can’t imagine what Britt and Grace have been through and how hard it is for them. Grace has set me up for failure because I’ve now got to follow in her ridiculously large footsteps!”

 He also paid tribute to his mum, Resie and revealed how she was the person who gave him the most confidence as a child.

 “I was born with a tumour wrapped around my spinal cord,” he said. “I was really sick and flatlined three times. What would that have been like for her? She blamed herself and was by my side every day in the hospital and never treated me any differently. She let me get the train with my friends, even though she was worried about me. That’s why I have friends and confidence because she let me do it.”

Miranda Tapsell revealed that growing up with virtually no indigenous representation in the media made her determined to do something about it.

 “I always watched Australian television and I wished I was blonder, taller and fairer. People said if you can give up your blackness I’ll like you more, treat you with more respect. I thought ‘Oh wow, I have to conceal it’.”

Toll Global Express CEO, Christine Holgate, continued her criticism of Prime Minister Scott Morrison at the event, after he intervened to remove her from her role as CEO of Australia Post in 2020.

“There are some things in this country that we really need to embrace – and that is safety, respect and equity,” she said.

Other high-profile guests included The Project’s Lisa Wilkinson, Australian activist Grace Tame, former politician and lawyer Julia Banks, Senator Sarah Hanson-Young, consent activist Chanel Contos, media personalities Shane Janek (Courtney Act), Jessica Rowe, Sally Obermeder and Belinda Russell, Paralympian Ellie Cole, actress Krew Boylan, fashion designer Camilla Freeman-Toppper and model Cheyenne Tozzi also joined the event.

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