Gender Equity Toolkit

Posted By TEU on Mar 7, 2018 | 0 comments

Welcome to the gender equity toolkit. The National Women’s Committee Te Kahurangi Māreikura of the Tertiary Education Union developed this kit to promote gender equity in Aotearoa.

While much of this kit is directed at the tertiary education sector, many of the resources available are easily adaptable for other sectors.

Gender equity will only be achieved when the making a difference for womeninstitutions of our society make an authentic commitment to achieving gender equality and empowering all women and girls.

We need our government, our institutions, and our industries, to each do their part to bring about gender equity for all women in New Zealand.

We must recognise that the realisation of gender equity is influenced by gender, race, class, orientation, ability, size, and more.

We hope to continue building this resource, and invite you to contribute your thoughts, suggestions, and concerns, to us by emailing


gender-equity-logo-smallTEU women talk about why unions are important

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gender-equity-logo-smallGender equity claims for negotiation

Research shows that people who are members of unions and covered by Collective Agreements receive higher wage increases and have better terms and conditions of employment.

There are many provisions of Collective Agreements which can improve employment conditions for women and work towards gender equity.

This Section of the Toolkit contains a number of claims which can be considered for negotiation by branches at local negotiations. Some of these claims reflect innovative practice, such as the employer continuing to pay Kiwisaver/superannuation payments when a staff member is on parental leave; others seek improvements to existing provisions. Many of these claims will benefit men as well as women.

Each claim is set out as a guide with background information, sample wording, key negotiation points and relevant documents.

They are intended to be used by a range of people, for example, by branch women’s representatives, who may like to use the claim as an opportunity to get women colleagues involved in discussion and promotion of the claim at negotiations.

This is an evolving section of the Toolkit and we plan to add more clauses as they are developed.


What can you do?

  • Take a look at the claims,
  • Decide if there is one that would enhance your collective agreement and gender equity in your institution,
  • Read all the information and seek more where it may be needed,
  • Talk to other colleagues about it,
  • Talk to the branch organiser about putting it forward in the next round of negotiations,
  • Feed the results of any settlement you may reach and/or any improvements you may make to the claim.

For TEU members wishing to have these claims considered as part of your branch claims, please first discuss these with your branch president. They can then form part of the normal claims development process at your branch which members will vote on prior to negotiations.

Payment of superannuation while on parental leave

This claim provides that an employer will continue to pay the employer superannuation/KiwiSaver contribution while an employee is on parental leave and was developed as a result of an initiative from ANZ Bank in 2015.

Salary sacrifice for early childhood education

This claim seeks agreement by the employer to establish an arrangement whereby employees who have children in an early childhood education centre/crèche that is owned by the tertiary institution may voluntarily reduce their gross salary by the cost of that childcare. This process is referred to as Salary Sacrificing.

This means that the cost of the childcare is not subject to PAYE, saving the staff member a significant amount of money. Specific examples have been advised of savings of $170 per week and more.

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Student loan contribution in lieu of superannuation

This claim provides an alternative for the employer contribution to a superannuation scheme. It provides for an equivalent superannuation payment to be made to an employee’s existing student loan, where an employee has not taken up a superannuation option.

It is recommended that this be negotiated as a member-only benefit.

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gender-equity-logo-smallTe Kaupapa Whaioranga – The Blueprint for Women in Tertiary

blueprint group photo“Women account for about half of both staff and student populations in the tertiary education sector. Yet the representation of women in senior positions across occupational groups, gender pay equity, and access to life-long learning remain significant issues. For example, while the percentage of women in senior academic positions in universities has improved (from 22 percent in 2010 to 24 percent in 2012), it still falls far short of overall participation rates of women staff and students.”

Key demands of The Blueprint for Women in Tertiary Education:

  • Funding must enhance the equitable participation of women, particularly in senior roles
  • Decision-making must recognise gender disparities in participation
  • Funding must be allocated to address the gender pay gap and employment equity
  • Decision-making must prioritise strategies to address the gender pay gap
  • Funding that ensures equity of access and participation
  • Decision-making must ensure equity of access and participation

Read the detail of our demands here:

If you would like to think about how to use The Blueprint for Women in your branch activities, TEU has developed a Guide to using Te Kaupapa Whaioranga. You can find this guide here:

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gender-equity-logo-smallTEU equity policies

Taking the time to establish a good policy is worth the effort. Of course, the implementation of good policy is critical but it helps to have a very good policy to base actions on.

TEU has a number of policies of particular relevance to women and the achievement of gender equity. These can be used to guide the development of similar policies within institutions and organisations.

Gender Equity Policy

The purpose of this policy is to outline what gender equity means in the in context of th tertiary sector as well as within the TEU.

To read the full text of TEU’s gender equity policy, click here:

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Equal Employment Opportunity Policy

The purpose of this policy to the TEU in promoting effecting EEO and diversity strategies within our tertiary education institutions and where appropriate to work with institutions to assess the effectiveness of these.

To read the full text of TEU’s EEO policy, click here:

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Job Evaluation

The purpose of this policy is to set out appropriate methodologies and principles for reviewing models of job evaluation in the New Zealand tertiary education sector.

To read the full text of TEU’s job evaluation policy, click here:

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The provision of early childhood education services in tertiary education institutions

The purposes of this policy is to promote the development and maintenance of high quality and appropriate early childhood education services as a necessary condition for employment and study at New Zealand tertiary education institutions.

To read the full text of TEU’s provision of early childhood education services in tertiary education institutions policy, click here: The provision of early childhood education services in tertiary education institutions

See also ‘Salary Sacrifice for early childhood education’ 

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Te Tiriti o Waitangi

The purpose of this policy is to clarify for the union and its members our mutual responsibilities as Tiriti partners and tertiary education professionals.  This policy affirms the principle of maintaining and advancing a Tiriti relationship, and that this objective must be accorded the highest priority by TEU Te Hautū Kahurangi o Aotearoa.

To read the full text of the policy, which includes Te Tiriti o Waitangi (Māori and English versions and the United Nations declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples, click here: Te Tiriti o Waitangi

Te reo rangatira

Tōku reo, tōku ohooho; tōku reo, tōku māpihi maurea

My language is my awakening; my language is the window to my soul

The purpose of this policy is to further acknowledge and define the union’s commitment to Te Tiriti o Waitangi, as it relates to the promotion and protection of te reo Māori and tikanga Māori.  This includes TEU’s own responsibilities as an organisation and in our work within tertiary education institutions.

To read the full text of TEU’s Te reo rangatira policy, click here:

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gender-equity-logo-smallLobbying and submissions

(Special thanks to Lorraine Rastorfer, NWC, for constructing this section)

Lobbying is working to influence people who hold power. By lobbying we let people know what the issues are that we want them to address, how and why. You can lobby many different ways but the important thing is taking your time to share your message with people who can make the change you want.

Lobbying can be done as an individual, a group of individuals or on behalf of organisations. It can take many forms, from an informal get together for coffee to formal written and oral submissions as well as a comprehensive plan for on-going lobbying.

Lobbying targets people with real or imagined power:

  • Politicians (local; national)
  • Policy makers (political party officials and activists; caucus research staff; and Government department key officials)
  • Local body or regional government officials
  • Media (to cover issues, to influence others)
  • Organisations (public, or voluntary)


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gender-equity-logo-smallUnion Women in Action

Women’s membership and participation in unions is increasing globally. Many unions have women’s networks, structures, campaigns and events to encourage and support women’s participation as well as to address the persistent gender inequalities.

Here is a range of women’s networks and campaigns, both national and international.

TEU National Women’s Committee, Te Kahurangi Māreikura

The National Women’s Committee, Te Kahurangi Māreikura, provides advice to the council and annual conference on issues of significance and/or concern to women, organises women members at national and local level, ensures that the union is representing the interests of women members in both professional and industrial spheres, and conducts national and local events for women members of the union.

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CTU Women’s Council

The New Zealand Council of Trade Unions Te Kauae Kaimahi brings together over 350,000 New Zealand union members in 40 affiliated unions. It is the united voice for working people and their families in New Zealand.

The Women’s Council includes women representatives from each of the affiliated unions, Te Runanga o nga Kaimahi Maori, Komiti Pasifika, [email protected] and StandUp.

The Council meets regularly throughout the year and sets goals that guide its activity. It elects co-conveners who also attend at the CTU National Affiliates Council. The Council has recently established a specific position of Māori co-convener.

The Council holds a biennial conference with representatives from all CTU unions. The theme of the 2017 Conference was Mana Wāhine.

The Council has a representative on the National Advisory Council on the Employment of Women and the New Horizons for Women Trust. The Council also liaises closely with the National Council of Women and the Ministry for Women.

What can you do?

Connect to the unionwomen Facebook page and see what local campaigns and activities there are that you may be able to join.

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Post Primary Teachers Association (PPTA) Women’s Network

The PPTA Women’s Network provides a structure and forum for women members to raise, discuss and promote their issues and aspirations at branch, regional and national levels.

Women’s Network Goals

  1.  To develop and maintain strong communication links for women members within regions and between regions, National Office and the Executive;
  2. To grow and support contributions on the PPTA Women Facebook page;
  3. Active support for the campaign to extend paid parental leave;
  4. To promote voting by women members and students in the upcoming General Election, particularly organised around a Suffrage Day event (i.e. 19 September);
  5. To coordinate activities with the PPTA Men’s Committee on issues relevant to both groups (for example, extending paid parental leave and the White Ribbon campaign).

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Public Service Association (PSA) Women’s Network

The Women’s Network is a place for women members to share experiences about work and organise around the things that need to change.  Over 40,000 women are members of the PSA.

Our Aims

  • Promote the interests of women within the PSA
  • Facilitate the sharing of information and experiences; and
  • Encourage and support women’s participation in PSA representative structures at all levels.

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NTEU Women

The National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) of Australia is committed to enhancing the participation and voice of women members. Women hold positions of influence and power at all levels of the union; are active on the NTEU enterprise bargaining teams; and contribute to the development of the NTEU strategy.

The union has been a leader in many areas concerning women and their professional and employment rights, and provides support for other women through the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) and other non-government organisations.

NTEU published the first national pay equity study done in Australia, and this has encouraged a broader commitment to pay equity within the labour movement.

At a national level, the NTEU Women’s Action Committee and the biennial Women’s Conference develop this work. The union publishes an annual women’s magazine, Agenda.

NTEU Women celebrate and organise activities for Bluestocking Week (see below).

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Bluestocking Week

DSCF2225Bluestocking Week is named for the first generations of university women of the 19th century began to use the term, even when it was being used as a derogatory term by their opponents.

Today, Bluestocking Week is a time to celebrate women’s achievements in academia, and is particularly supported by Australian tertiary education unions.

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The Australian Education Union Women’s program

AEU womens programme

NEW! Download our great new resource packs on parental leave and returning to work.

AEU women’s section runs a busy programme throughout the year, including a popular International Women’s Day dinner, the annual Women’s Conference and the Anna Stewart Memorial Program for women unionists.The Australian Education Union (AEU) leads the way in advances for women in the workplace and has a strong and long-standing commitment to the needs and issues of women.

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Unions Work for Women

Unions Work for Women (UWFW) is a campaign aimed at inspiring Australian women in public education to join their union. It’s also about celebrating the achievements of our current active members and spreading the word about the many terrific resources and training we have on offer.

The union movement is a force for change. We don’t just stand up for your rights at work, we want to create a fairer society overall. That means fighting to remove discrimination — and we know that for many women in the workplace, that still exists. On this site you’ll find real stories from real women who talk about how joining the union has changed their lives, personally and professionally.

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ITUC Women

Women have increasingly become part of the paid workforce and of trade unions, and there have been important achievements in organising, collective bargaining, and rights. Yet women remain over represented in precarious, low-skilled, low-paid jobs with little prospects for career advancement.

The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and its affiliated organisations work together to advance women’s rights and gender equality. The ITUC actively promotes equality at the workplace and the full integration of women in trade unions including in their decision-making bodies.

The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) is the global voice of the world’s working people.

The ITUC’s primary mission is the promotion and defence of workers’ rights and interests, through international cooperation between trade unions, global campaigning and advocacy within the major global institutions.

Its main areas of activity include the following: trade union and human rights; economy, society and the workplace; equality and non-discrimination; and international solidarity.

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Count Us In! ITUC Women in leadership campaign

ITUCThe Count Us In! campaign engages men and women to bring about change: more women in trade union leadership positions and concerted efforts to organise more women in unions.

Six reasons to count us in!

  1. Far more women are likely to join a union, as members, activists and leaders, when unions reflect the gender diversity in their leadership.
  2. By promoting women leaders, unions gain capacity to build workers’ power and, to win better rights for all workers.
  3. Acknowledging and valuing women’s leadership capacities is an investment in democracy and in the strength of our movement.
  4. More women in leadership enhances the ability of unions to reach out to, organise and mobilise more women members and activists.
  5. The ITUC Constitution requires a quota of at least 30% women in leadership positions.
  6. By promoting women leaders, unions become more representative of the work force in their respective countries.

What can you do?

Find out more about the Count Us In campaign. Click here to subscribe to the newsletter and keep up to date with global activities

gender-equity-logo-smallNational and international days

International Women’s Day – March 8th

International Women’s Day (IWD) falls on 8th March each year. It has its origins in the protests, strikes and marches of women trade unionists and was originally known as International Working Women’s Day. Over the years, IWD has evolved into an internationally recognised day to draw attention to women’s’ rights and equal participation in all spheres of political, economic and social life.

How can I get involved?

You could have a morning tea, organise a breakfast, or share your lunch together with women on campus to celebrate International Women’s Day. If you would like some assistance, ideas for speakers, contact 

ITUC marks International Women’s Day

The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) celebrates IWD and encourages affiliated unions around the world to hold events. Around this day every year ITUC releases special reports, videos or campaigns to bring public attention to the problems faced by women around the world.

Link to ITUC website:,451

international womens dayUN Women and International Women’s Day

The United Nations began celebrating International Women’s Day (IWD) on 8 March during International Women’s Year 1975. Two years later, in December 1977, the General Assembly adopted a resolution proclaiming a United Nations Day for Women’s Rights and International Peace to be observed on any day of the year by member states, in accordance with their historical and national traditions.

Increasingly, International Women’s Day is a time to reflect on progress made, to call for change and to celebrate acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who have played an extraordinary role in the history of their countries and communities.

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Suffrage Day 19 September

In 1893, New Zealand proudly became the first nation in the world to grant women the right to vote. The women who fought for this right were known as ‘Suffragettes’, from the word ‘suffrage’ which means political franchise, or simply franchise, which is the right to vote in public, political elections.

Kate Sheppard (check a $10 note) was an instrumental figure in securing the right to vote for women in New Zealand, but it did not come easily. Facing entrenched views of male domination, media backlash and counter-petitions, it took years of hard work and struggle by the Women’s Christian Temperance Movement and many suffragists. These women and their supporters had been campaigning for the right to vote since the mid-1880s, and organised a series of huge petitions to Parliament. In 1891 eight petitions containing more than 9000 signatures were gathered, and in 1892 six petitions containing almost 20,000. The final 32,000 signature petition was presented on a 766-foot-long document and led to the signing of a new Electoral Act into law on 19 September 1893.kate1

Finally, on 19 September 1893, Lord Glasgow signed the bill into law. Suffragists celebrated throughout the country, and congratulations poured in from suffrage campaigners in Britain, Australia, the United States and elsewhere: one wrote that New Zealand’s achievement gave ‘new hope and life to all women struggling for emancipation’.

Today Suffrage day (19 September) provides an opportunity for individuals and organisations to celebrate New Zealand’s suffrage achievements and look for ways to make further progress to benefit women and achieve gender equality.

Celebrations of Suffrage Day:

How suffrage day has been celebrated throughout the country:

Women MPs celebrate


NZ Suffrage Histories:

A brief NZ history of women’s suffrage with national and international timelines:

History of NZ’s women’s movement:

A short Essay adapted from Dorothy Page’s introduction to The Suffragists: Women Worked for the Vote. Includes details of political contexts and events in NZ leading up to the granting of the vote.

Wikipedia link:’s_suffrage_in_New_Zealand


Annie Kenney and Christabel Pankhurst used strong tactics in Britain as members of the Women’s Social and Political Union (WSPU) 

Global Histories:

General resource including popular culture and names of women worldwide who were prominent campaigners.

The movie Suffragette is a 2015 British historical period drama.


What can you do:

Many TEU branches organise events to mark Suffrage Day. Some now have a well-established tradition of a breakfast with guest speaker. At Victoria University, the breakfast is partly funded by the branch and partly by the vice-chancellor; at Lincoln it is fully funded by the vice-chancellor and women give a koha to a women’s organisation.

You could get a few women together and start planning a breakfast at your institution. Start small and keep it simple. Contact TEU Women’s Officer for support and information


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gender-equity-logo-smallOrganising an Event for Women

Organising an event for women – A Checklist

This can be a simple event or a more elaborate one. Try the simple one first!

A morning tea to mark a day such as International Womens Day (March 8) or Suffrage Day (19 September) is a great way to engage women on campus and generate support for gender equality.

Here is a Checklist that you can use as the basis for getting started: Organising an Event for Women – A Checklist

Significant Dates for Women

There are many dates both national and international that are significant for women and that you may be able to organise an event around.

Here is a list of significant dates for women throughout the year which offer possibilities for organising events: List of significant dates for women

Family friendly events

Branches and institutions should be encouraged to think carefully about a family friendly approach to activities, events and meetings.

This may include holding events at varying times of the day, not just after 5pm which can lower women’s participation as many women need to get home for family responsibilities. Varying the times and ensuring some events are held at lunch times or even early morning can offer greater opportunity for women to participate.

When appropriate it may also be possible to hold family-friendly meetings where children are invited to attend. As well as promoting participation by women, it can also help achieve a work life balance. An important consideration when organising a family-friendly event is bathrooms nearby for children – as they are sure to need them!

See also International Women’s Day – March 8 and Suffrage Day – 19 September

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gender-equity-logo-smallNetworking and Alliances

There are a number of women’s organisations that the TEU is a member of or affiliated to. The TEU is also actively involved in a number of coalitions.

Some of these organisations have a very long history of supporting and campaigning for women, others are new networks or coalitions to campaign for a particular issue.

Through these networks and alliances there are lots of opportunities to get connected and develop skills. Look out for the tips below on ‘How to get involved’

26 for Babies Coalition

26 for BabiesThis coalition has local groups in both Wellington and Auckland and comprises a range of organisations (e.g. Every Child Counts, La Leche, Plunket, unions) committed to improving parental leave, including increasing government paid parental leave in New Zealand.

How to Get Involved

  1. You could ask your branch of TEU to join the coalition
  2. You could go along to a coalition meeting in Wellington or Auckland
  3. You could consider helping get a local branch established in your area
  4. You could sign the petition supporting a further eight weeks of paid parental leave to bring it up to 26 weeks

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Pay Equity Coalition (Wellington)

Pay Equity ChallengeThe Pay Equity Coalition is made up of a range of organisations and individuals committed to closing the gender pay gap. The coalition challenges the government to identify and commit to plans for closing the gender pay gap, including how they will work with employers and unions in the public and private sectors.

To find out more:

  • TEU is an active member of this coalition.

How to get involved

Like the Facebook page

Join one of the campaign actions, rallies when it is called – look for news of these.

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National Council of Women of New Zealand

National Council of WomenNCWNZ is an umbrella organisation established in 1896 with a membership of more than 280 organisations, as well as individuals. It operates with a volunteer board and 20 branches nationwide. NCWNZ makes a difference through its work to increase gender equality and it has led or supported many initiatives that have benefitted women.

To find out more:

NCWNZ produces a newsletter ‘On Balance’ with national and international articles and research.

How to get involved

TEU is a member of NCWNZ and there are opportunities for TEU women to engage with their local branch. Contact TEU Women’s Officer for more information. 

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Women’s Studies Association of Aotearoa/New Zealand.

The aim of the Women’s Studies Association of New Zealand/Aotearoa is to promote women’s studies by encouraging feminist research and scholarship, promoting women’s studies courses and events, preserving feminist heritage and sharing the work of members through publications, events and conferences.

To find out more:

Diversity WorksDW_member_logo_col_RGB

Diversity Works, previously known as the Equal Employment Opportunities (EEO) Trust, is a not-for-profit organisation tasked with providing EEO information and tools to employers and raising awareness of diversity issues in New Zealand workplaces.

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Working Women’s Resource Centre

Working Women’s Resource CentreThe Working Women’s Resource Centre in Auckland was set up in 1984 for the benefit of working women, especially those in private and public sector Unions.

The triple role that many women have as mothers, runners of households and employees means that, by and large, women are underrepresented in positions of responsibility, especially in decision making, in the workplace, in Unions.

The aims of the Working Womens Resource Centre are:

  • To promote and encourage the implementation of the Working Womens Charter.
  • To promote and encourage the use of the Centre as a focal point for development of a women’s perspective on workplace and industrial issues.
  • To develop better understanding of Labour and Combined State Unions policy especially as it affects women.
  • To provide an educational forum for women workers, Unions and the community.
  • To collect, catalogue and distribute educational resources on women and industrial issues for women, Trade Unions and the community.
  • TEU is a member of the WWRC. To find out more:

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New Horizons for Women Trust

New Horizons for Women TrustThe New Horizons for Women Trust provides grants to assist women to develop their potential. Since 1993, the Trust has been raising funds and administering awards for second-chance education and training and research into issues about women and girls.

The Trust also administers the Sonja Davies Peace Award, the Peg Hutchison Opportunity Award and the Janus 1995 -NGO Award. In addition, the Trust administers the prestigious Ria McBride Public Service Management Award for Women, sponsored by the State Services Commission.

These awards are available as a result of public donations and the generosity of individual, family and organisational donors. To find out more:

How can I get involved?

  • TEU is a member of NHWT and offers our meeting room to the Trust for their meetings.
  • Consider standing as a member of the Trust.
  • Talk to TEU about getting support for your nomination.
  • Look at the grants available.
  • Apply for a grant yourself or pass the information on to relevant women

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National Advisory Council on the Employment of Women

Set up in 1967, the National Advisory Council on the Employment of Women (NACEW) is the longest standing ministerial advisory body in New Zealand’s history.  NACEW works with social advocacy groups to advocate for better employment conditions for women and strategies to increase women’s participation in the workforce.

National Advisory Council on the Employment of Women

As set out in its Terms of Reference NACEW’s role is to:

  • advise the Minister for Women on matters referred by him/her concerning the employment of women;
  • express views and make recommendations as appropriate to the Minister for Women on matters relating to the employment of women;
  • make representations or submissions as appropriate to public bodies such as Commissions of Inquiry subject to the approval of the Minister; and
  • promote the dissemination of information on the employment of women in New Zealand and overseas.

The CTU has a representative on NACEW.

To find out more:

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Te Ropu Wahine Māori Toko i te Ora (Maori Women’s Welfare League Inc)                      

Te Ropu Wahine Māori Toko i te Ora (Māori Women’s Welfare League Inc) exists to improve the spiritual, social and economic well-being of Māori, adhering to traditional values and concepts to chieve their goals and objectives.

Te Ropu Wahine Māori Toko i te Ora has been responsible for initiating many programmes and plans to assist Māori to reclaim their tino rangatiratanga (sovereignty) as a people taking control of their own destiny.

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P.A.C.I.F.I.C.A. Inc

P.A.C.I.F.I.C.A Incorporated is a national non-government organisation (NGO) for Pacific women living in Aotearoa New Zealand with branches throughout the country. It exists to create opportunities for Pacific women to support one another, participate in communities and work on issues affecting them and their families.

Find out more here:

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The Campaign for Equal Value, Equal Pay

The Campaign for Equal Value, Equal Pay (CEVEP) is a voluntary organisation committed to reducing the gender pay gap in New Zealand through policy and initiatives to advance pay equity in general and equal pay for work of equal value in particular.

CEVEP has campaigned for effective pay equity policy and legislation since 1986, including advocating to government and political parties, writing submissions and appearing before select committees, producing materials on pay equity for the public and the media, and organising tours of overseas experts to New Zealand.

In April 2013, CEVEP was invited to be an ‘intervening’ party to a pay equity test case taken under the Equal Pay Act 1972 by rest home caregiver Kristine Bartlett and the Service & Food Workers Union (now called E Tū).

To find out more:

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Ministry for Women Te Minitatanga mō ngā Wāhine

The Ministry for Women, Te Minitatanga mō ngā Wāhine, is the Government’s principal advisor on achieving better results for women, and wider New Zealand. The Ministry has four priority areas: more women in education and training; utilising women’s skills; more women in leadership and keeping women free from violence.

The Ministry provides policy advice on improving outcomes for women, manages our international reporting obligations for women, assists state sector boards and committees to find suitable women nominees, and provides support services to the Minister for Women.

To find out more:

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UN Women is the only global agency dedicated to the empowerment of women delivering programmes for women and girls, UN Women has five priority areas of intervention:

  • Increasing women’s leadership and participation
  • Ending violence against women
  • Engaging women in all aspects of peace and security processes
  • Enhancing women’s economic empowerment
  • Making gender equality central to national development planning and budgeting

To find our more:

UNWomen National Committee Aotearoa NZ


The UN Women National Committee Aotearoa New Zealand exists to mobilise support for UN Women’s work and builds strategic relationships with companies who we believe are committed to this agenda.

In New Zealand and the Pacific, the UN Women National Committee Aotearoa New Zealand advocate for women’s empowerment, raising awareness of the issues affecting women around the world,. The committee also raises money to fund UN Women projects, and lobby the New Zealand government to support UN Women’s initiatives.

What can you do?

Become a member of UNWomen and suport women in the Pacific to achieve gender equality:

To find out more:

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Business and Professional Women NZ


The Federation of Business and Professional Women New Zealand seeks to achieve a just and equal status for women in all levels and areas of society where decisions are taken in true partnership with men, based on mutual respect, for a more balanced and peaceful world.

Their objectives are to:

  • Improve the quality of life for all women
  • Advocate for equal social and economic opportunities for women
  • Eliminate all forms of discrimination against women

BPW is an active member of the Pay Equity Coalition.

To find out more:

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YWCA Auckland


YWCA Auckland is a feminist organisation and part of a global movement of women leading change.  For the last four years, the focus of YWCA Auckland advocacy has been working for equal pay in New Zealand.

To find out more:

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Te Ara The Encyclopaedia of New Zealand has a section on the history of women’s networks and clubs in New Zealand:

Women’s organisations

Demonstrations of domestic arts, with a tinge of competitiveness, extended to get-togethers beyond the home. These increased as more women’s organisations were set up. While some organisations had a political or welfare agenda, others operated mainly as social support groups. As well as encouraging familiar rituals, these gatherings provided opportunities to explore novel ideas, learn new skills and push back the boundaries of acceptable behaviour.

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gender-equity-logo-smallWomen’s networks in tertiary institutions

There are a range of women’s networks and organisations in our tertiary education institutions. These serve as valuable opportunities for women to gather together to focus on gender issues and organise events and seminars for women. Many TEU members are actively involved in/leading these groups.

Massey University – [email protected]

Women @ Massey.png

[email protected] was established as a grassroots organisation in 2009. [email protected] sits outside of the official University structure, and is run by a committee of ten women. While [email protected] does not directly report to the Administration, they do have a positive working relationship with the head of Human Resources and meet regularly with the Vice Chancellor.

The terms of reference for the group are to:

  • encourage and support women of the university;
  • foster awareness of the particular needs of women and their relationship with the university;
  • provide a channel of communication on relevant matters that relate to university and women’s development and associated issues;
  • foster and create a climate of support and for sharing the knowledge and skills for the benefit of all;
  • facilitate or organise gatherings and events that support the growth of [email protected] or assist the university where that is appropriate;
  • nominate women for committees and working parties of the university; and
  • provide a reference point for women at Massey University and strengthen the role of women in the university community.

[email protected] run a variety of events and activites throughout the year, including lunchboxes, mentoring circles, a yearly leadership seminar, and clothing drives for Dress for Success.

How can I get involved?

Check Massey’s website for the next [email protected] event.

Email [email protected] for more info

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University of Otago – Staff Women’s Caucus

The Staff Women’s Caucus at the University of Otago is a group of staff, both general and academic who meet for social and collegial contact.

The group provides a forum for discussing common interests, affirming, supporting and strengthening the role of women in the University community. Staff Women’s Caucus responds to public comment affecting women, nominate women for committees or working parties and comment on reports and charters.

How can I get involved?

Go along to the next Brown Paper Bag Lunch event.

Email Staff Women’s Caucus

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Weltec – [email protected]


This network was formed in 2014 with celebrations for International Women’s Day.

The network shares articles of interest to women and organises events to celebrate Suffrage Day in 2015.

How can I get involved?.

Contact Kirsten Blyde for more info

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gender-equity-logo-smallGender Equity Strategies and Tools

Various organisations, including trade unions and government agencies, have developed an Action Plan/ Strategy/ Manual or similar to achieve Gender Equality. All of these contain useful information which can be adapted to the Aotearoa/NZ context.

Here are a few for you to browse through.

Achieving Gender Equality – A Trade Union Manual

Produced by ITUC International Trade Union Confederation

ITUC gender equality“Despite record flows of women into the labour market particularly over the last two decades, equality between women and men has not happened. In developing countries and industrialised ones too, women’s employment continues to be typified by part-time, low-paid, atypical, sub-contracted, unregulated, unprotected, temporary or casual work. Virtually everywhere, women do not get equal pay for work of equal value.

While more women are joining unions than ever before, they are under-represented in decision-making structures.  To address these issues, and to help integrate gender perspectives in trade union activities and policies, the ITUC has produced this Manual. It is intended to assist women and men trade unionists to face up to the challenge equality presents and make changes in the unions, changes at work and changes in our attitudes to each other. This Manual is intended for use by both women and men and not only in specific activities for women. It is also designed to provide background material and discussion activities on gender issues as a supplement to general educational activities.”

Guy Ryder, General Secretary.

Contents Include:

  • A Gender Perspective
  • Organising for Equality
  • Gender Relations in Trade Unions
  • The Role of Women’s Committees/Structures
  • Gender Mainstreaming
  • Building Equality
  • Sexual Harassment
  • ILO and Decent Standards at Work

What can you do?

Find the ITUC manual here:

Find out more about ITUC and global campaigns here: 

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Gender Equality Action Plan – Education International

EI_2103_GEAP_ENGThe Education International Gender Equality Action Plan is a framework which will enable EI and its affiliates to translate education unions’ policies and activities relating to gender equality into action. The 2011 EI Resolution on Gender Equality states that unions are responsible for ensuring the full participation of women in union structures and at all levels. The EI GEAP highlights three main priorities:

  1. Promoting gender equality within unions
  2. Securing girls’ access to and participation in quality public education
  3. Promoting and securing women’s economic empowerment

Additional priorities include women in decision making and participation in the public sphere; gender sensitive education to overcome gender stereotypes; balancing work and family responsibilities; eliminating violence against women; strengthening and linking Education International Women’s Networks.

About Education International

Education International represents organisations of teachers and other education employees across the globe.

It is the world’s largest federation of unions, representing thirty million education employees in about four hundred organisations in one hundred and seventy countries and territories, across the globe. Education International unites all teachers and education employees.

Education International is the voice for education employees across the globe.

TEU is affiliated to Education International and sends a delegate to the International Conference.

What can you do?

Take a look at the Gender Equality Action Plan, especially the Strategy and Action Points for the 3 priorities.

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Negotiating for Equality – Gender and Pay Toolkit

Irish Congress of Trade Unions

From the Foreword to this Toolkit:

ictu_logoThankfully the concept of equal pay for equal work has become more widely accepted than it was in the early fifties, as is illustrated in the various quotes from the Irish Women Workers Union Archives, which you will find throughout the report.

However the pace of change has been uneven and a gender pay gap of just under 15% still remains in Ireland. This is surprising in that legislation has existed since 1975 to outlaw wage discrimination on the grounds of sex and there have been major changes in the role of women in society and a marked increase in the number of women in the workplace.

It has become increasingly clear that closure of the pay gap will only come about by both legislative and attitudinal changes. Congress and the affiliated unions want to ensure that women are paid equally, and properly valued in the workforce. We further wish to influence labour market policies so that they recognise the needs of all workers to have conditions that take into account their multifaceted roles and responsibilities in wider society, not just in the workplace.

This publication seeks to explain the reasons for the gender pay gap and to put forward an agenda for action for its reduction and eventual elimination.

Contents include:

  • Gender Pay Gap – Research Findings
  • The Law & Equality
  • Equality Audit
  • Job Evaluation
  • Gender Proofing/Gender Impact Assessment
  • Recruitment & Selection
  • Gender pay questionnaire
  • Promote yourself – Training for Women In the Workplace
  • Equality Briefing for Employers

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Gender Strategy Toolkit – WGEA, Australia

The Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA, Australia) has developed the Gender strategy toolkit, which enables organisations to diagnose performance, set goals and build a comprehensive gender equality strategy. The toolkit provides guidance for organisations needing assistance meeting the minimum standards, those aiming to become an Employer of Choice for Gender Equality or organisations looking to adopt best practice.

The toolkit contains the following sections:

  • Section 1: The business case for gender equality
  • Section 2: The gender equality roadmap
  • Section 3: The gender equality diagnostic tool – Key focus areas
  • Section 4: Mapping your current position – Using the Gender Equality Diagnostic Tool
  • Section 5: Planning your journey – Creating or refining your strategy
  • Section 6: Making the journey
  • Section 7: Travelling faster – Reviewing your strategy and action plans

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Workplace Gender Equality Agency – Australian Government

wgeaThe Workplace Gender Equality Agency is an Australian Government statutory agency created by the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012.

The Agency is charged with promoting and improving gender equality in Australian workplaces.

For more information on the WGEA click here:

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WEPs stands for Women’s Empowerment Principles. The principles are the result of collaboration between the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) and the United Nations Global Compact and are adapted from the Calvert Women’s Principles®.

WEPs is about empowering women to participate fully in economic life across all sectors and throughout all levels of economic activity.
It’s essential to:

  • Building strong economies;
  • Establishing more stable and just societies;
  • Achieving internationally-agreed goals for development, sustainability and human rights;
  • Improving quality of life for women, men, families and communities; and
  • Propelling businesses’ operations and goals.

The Women’s Empowerment Principles are a set of Principles for business offering guidance on how to empower women in the workplace, marketplace and community.


  1. Establish high-level corporate leadership for gender equality
  2. Treat all women and men fairly at work – respect and support human rights and non-discrimination
  3. Ensure the health, safety and well-being of all women and men workers
  4. Promote education, training and professional development for women
  5. Implement enterprise development, supply chain and marketing practices that empower women
  6. Promote equality through community initiatives and advocacy
  7. Measure and publicly report on progress to achieve gender equality

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