Bridge Housing joined global celebrations for International Women’s Day 2019 today with a lunch addressed by QBE Insurance Group General Counsel and Company Secretary Carolyn Scobie.

Carolyn, who has had a high-flying legal career in the male dominated property and finance industries over the past 25 years, is also a Bridge Housing Board director since 2015. 

Carolyn said: "We have made great strides as a community in gender equality but that 14.6% pay gap is dogged and it’s very hard to get to the bottom of why that’s happening. Worse still, there’s a 28% gap in superannuation savings between men and women and this issue affects many of Bridge Housing’s female residents.”

She also pointed out that in the 10 weeks since the start of 2019, 11 Australian women have died at the hands of a family member in acts of domestic violence.

Carolyn said she has worked so long in male-dominated industries that “I don’t even notice anymore that I’m the only woman in the room.” But she said: “It’s really important for leaders to set the ground work for gender balance.”

Introducing Carolyn, CEO John Nicolades said: “Gender equality is not a women’s issue, it’s an economic issue. Everyone has a role to play in creating greater gender equality, be it in the workforce, as a partner, as a father or as a parent. A gender balanced world is a better world.”

Bridge Housing has a gender-balanced Board and senior executive team. We have a range of policies to support gender balance and diversity, including generous paid parental leave and a gender and diversity policy.