ISACA rep works with UN to advance gender equality

Friday, 23 February, 2018

ISACA rep works with UN to advance gender equality

An Australian delegation heading to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women will be joined by Jo Stewart-Rattray, an ISACA board director and ‎director of BRM Holdich.

Stewart-Rattray will lend her expertise on empowering rural women and girls through the use of technology.

A lack of mentors and female role models, gender bias and unequal growth opportunities compared to men are barriers to women in the tech workforce, according to ISACA’s 2017 research ‘The Future Tech Workforce: Breaking Gender Barriers’.

Additionally, UN Women cites estimates that as much as US $28 trillion, or 26%, could be added to the global annual gross domestic product by 2025 if women played an identical role to men in labour markets.

During the CSW’s 62nd session, to take place from 12–23 March 2018, representatives of 193 UN member states, civil society organisations and UN entities will gather at UN headquarters in New York. They will discuss past progress, gaps and emerging issues affecting gender equality, with an emphasis on how technology can impact the lives of rural women. The commission will then draw conclusions and adopt resolutions outlining an improved path forward.

Stewart-Rattray will be one of two non-government delegates to join the team of eight delegates representing Australia this year. These non-government delegates play an invaluable role by ensuring a broad range of views are represented at CSW, providing their expert advice to the Australian Government and acting as liaisons with Australian and international civil society organisations. Australia is one of few governments that allow non-government delegates to join the sessions.

The commission has achieved significant progress in advancing gender equality through landmark agreements, such as contributing to the drafting of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, creating the 1953 Convention on the Political Rights of Women, which was the first international law instrument to recognise and protect the political rights of women, and devising the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women in 1979.

“I am extremely humbled, honoured and excited to help represent Australia and to address gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls on an international stage,” Stewart-Rattray said.

“We hope to accomplish a great deal during our time together to further gender equality and empowerment.”

Stewart-Rattray is chair of ISACA’s Women’s Leadership Council and a leading champion of ISACA’s SheLeadsTech program, which seeks to increase the representation of women in technology leadership roles and in the tech workforce globally.

“I have made it my mission to make sure that women and girls across Australia have the opportunity to make choices about their lives and their careers,” Stewart-Rattray said.

“My experience with ISACA’s SheLeadsTech program was one of the main reasons I was selected as part of the delegation, and I deeply appreciate the doors that ISACA continues to open for me in my career. As a girl from the Australian bush, I hope this encourages other women in rural areas and cities alike to persevere and follow their dreams.”

Image caption: Jo Stewart-Rattray.

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