Voices of Older People Series: Older Women on Gender Equality
Across the past fifty years, significant social and legislative change has impacted positively on the lives of women and girls. Today’s older women have seen improved access to paid work and education; they have witnessed significant legislation aimed at combating gender discrimination, such as the Equal Pay Act (1972).
Yet one in three older Australian women lives below the poverty line and women on average accumulate between half and one third of the superannuation of male retirees. Older women are the largest growing demographic at risk of homelessness and many report a growing voicelessness or ‘invisibility’ in older age.
With this Voices of Older People: Older Women on Gender paper, COTA provides a public platform for older women to share their reflections on the experience of growing up female in Australia. Experiences, as this paper attests, that have often been limiting and discriminatory: then further complicated by their experience of ageing.