Women are helping to plan the future of South Australian sports thanks to a Marshall Government initiative across governance boards.
Minister for Recreation, Sport and Racing Corey Wingard has written a letter to the state’s sporting organisations reminding them of commitments towards the 40:40:20 policy which seeks governance structures of 40% male, 40% female and 20% discretionary.
Of the 27 organisations engaged in the policy, 16 (59 percent) have already met the requirement but Minister Wingard said there was still more work to do.
The policy comes amid a surge in the popularity and participation rates of women’s sports, which has been supported by Marshall Government funding and the Grassroots Football, Cricket, Netball Program which is providing much needed family-friendly facilities after years of neglect from the previous Labor Government.
“Sporting clubs and organisations are becoming much more diverse and inclusive of men and women so it just makes good governance sense that the composition of the board can reflect the make up of the people playing that sport,” Minister Wingard said.
“This policy ensures there is a pathway for both men and women, regardless of the sport, beyond the playing arena and into the governance of the sector.”
Minister Wingard said the policy was similar to the Grassroots program as it supported both men and women rather than focusing on one sex.
“Its sole aim isn’t only to encourage more women into sports administration, rather it aims to reinforce an inclusive culture amongst state sporting boards,” Minister Wingard said.
“It also seeks to achieve suitable representation on current female dominated boards that we often see in sports like netball.”
Minister for Human Services Michelle Lensink said the number of organisations already engaged in the 40:40:20 policy was a great start.
“It’s really fantastic to see 59 per cent of organisations engaged in this policy have already met the 40:40:20 requirement and I urge others follow suit and aspire towards that goal,” Minister Lensink said.
“Promoting women into governance positions in sport gives huge inspiration to their peers and the next generation to strive to the top of their field too.
“The Liberal Government is determined to address gender inequality, which is why we are developing a Women’s Employment and Leadership Strategy that aims to increase opportunities for women in positions of power and decision-making and increase women’s financial independence through assisting them in employment.”
The Liberal State Government is urging all of the 73 sporting organisations who receive taxpayer funding to meet the 40:40:20 initiative by July 2021.