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Tuesday 7 June, 2016 - 6.30pm - State Library of Victoria

Tickets $20 + booking fee

Chaired as always by fearless femmo warrior Clementine Ford and presented and curated by YWCA Victoria and Women's Melbourne Network

Bringing together a panel of women at vastly different stages of their political careers, this event aims to discuss what ‘representing women and women’s issues’ means for females in Australian politics.

The discussion will debate the merits of gender quotas, the representation of women in parliament, the effects this can have on the inclusion of feminist perspectives on political issues and the pressures this can place on female politicians to be ‘representative’ of women. Plus much much more. 

ANNA BURKE recently retired as the elected representative for Chisholm (which covers suburbs such as Box Hill, Clayton and Mount Waverley in Melbourne's east), a position she's held since 1998 Federal Election.

Ms Burke was only the second woman to be speaker of the House of Representatives, a role she took on in 2012 after Peter Slipper resigned. She's been noted by current Labor leader Bill Shorten for her "unflinching dedication" to the rights of refugees and  asylum seekers and her commitment to the people and issues in her local electorate.
Prior to entering Federal Parliament, Anna worked as a national industrial officer for the Finance Sector Union, where she represented the workers in the banking, finance and insurance industries. Anna has also worked in human relations for VicRoads, and for the Victorian Institute of Technology (now Victoria University).

SAMANTHA RATNAM is the current Greens Candidate for Wills and was elected Mayor of Moreland in 2015. Samantha and her family left Sri Lanka in 1987 after the war broke out and arrived to begin new lives in Australia in 1989. Samantha’s career has been spent in social work. She has experience in the fields of drug and alcohol rehabilitation, mental health, and international development. Before becoming mayor, she worked as a program manager at the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre helping migrants from refugee and asylum seeking backgrounds. She studied politics and social work at The University of Melbourne and has completed a PhD in youth sociology. 

SOPHIE ISMAIL is the Labor candidate for the Federal Seat of Melbourne. She is a lawyer with experience in employment, education, discrimination, multilateral trade negotiations and human rights.

Sophie migrated to Australia with her family in 1988 and is the oldest of four children from a multicultural family. She spent two years in Canberra working on the Government’s Human Rights Framework and international employment policy, during which she represented the Australian Government in trade negotiations and at the International Labour Organisation. Sophie is a proud feminist and believes that gender equality must be a core aspect of Labor's commitment to economic and social justice.

Panel discussion will run from 6.30pm - 7.30pm and will include a Q&A so have those questions ready!

Guests are invited to join the YWCA and Women's Melbourne Network for drinks and nibbles and networking at The Moat, just around the corner at 176 Little Lonsdale St, after the panel.