Gender Lens on the 2024-25 Budget

Introduction to the Gender Lens on the 2024-25 Budget

In March 2024 the Australian Government released “Working for Women: A Strategy for Gender Equality”. This strategy identified five key priority areas to address the economic inequality that women experience. The five areas that the Government identified are:

  • gender-based violence
  • unpaid and paid care
  • economic equality and security
  • health
  • leadership, representation and decision-making.

This is the framework that NFAW has adopted this year in our analysis of the 2024-25 Budget.

We welcome the headline measures that restructure the stage 3 tax cuts and superannuation on Commonwealth funded Paid Parental Leave, both measures that we have been calling for in our previous Gender Lens projects. These will particularly help women, as shown in our detailed analysis of these measures.

But there is a lack of ambition and structural reform across key portfolios.

The most intractable issues relate to the effect that the Gender Pay Gap has on women’s earnings, and the causes of that pay gap. The Government supports higher wages in the Aged Care and ECEC sectors, but there is still work to be done in this space, including the feminised professions of teaching and nursing that are largely funded by the states and territories.

We welcome the Women’s Budget Paper that has again identified some of the key initiatives and outcomes across portfolios. These examples are based on the requirement that Departments and Agencies implement gender responsive budgeting.

We note that OECD best practice for Gender Responsive Budgeting includes an assessment of the impact of budgets as part of the implementation. It is in that spirit that we present our independent analysis: A Gender Lens on the Budget: 2024-25.

In addition to the authors named on the papers NFAW would like to thank the editorial team of: Jennifer Bushell; Caroline Edwards; Helen Innes; and Mary Welsh. We also acknowledge the work of Dr Kathy MacDermott as principal editor over previous years that has shaped this year’s Gender Lens.

Professor Helen Hodgson
Chair Social Policy Committee 

Marie Coleman AO PSM
Advisor to Social Policy Committee