Goss slated on promises to women
By Philippa Stanford
BRISBANE — "Women and the Goss Government" was the theme of a September 2 forum here. Speakers were Susan Price, Democratic Socialist candidate in the state election, and Unna Liddy of the Women's Abortion Action Campaign.
The Goss government has said that it will not take action against women seeking an abortion although several section of the Criminal Code state that women who do so, and the people who assist them, are liable for prosecution. "This directly contradicts the findings of the Fitzgerald Inquiry, which recommended that if there are laws in the criminal code that cannot be enforced, they should be removed", said Liddy.
"Although 66% of Queenslanders support the decriminalisation of abortion and the Goss government has majority support and is in a very good position to tackle this issue, it has still been ignored.
Price said there were many issues of concern to women that Labor has failed to address in its term of government. "In 1990 Queensland had the highest rate in Australia of unmet child-care needs as well as the lowest level of welfare expenditure per head. There are still no laws providing for maternity/paternity leave, and statistics show that women's participation in education at all levels is lower than men's", said Price.
"On top of all these inequalities there is still the question of violence against women, which the Goss government has tackled by placing the onus on to women to 'use common sense'."
Another issue that Goss has failed to take up is the decriminalisation of prostitution.
Price said it was important to "link up the issues of equal pay, child-care and women's rights in general with other issues of human rights".