Resilient Australia National Significance Award for the GAD Pod!

We were really delighted to receive the Resilient Australia National Significance Award for “Addressing domestic violence in disasters through implementing National Gender and Emergency Management Guidelines” on 7th November at the Adelaide Convention Centre. 
L-R: John Gibbon, Deb Parkinson, Helen Riseborough, Caroline Spencer
In awarding this to the GAD Pod, the Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience (AIDR) writes: ‘Gender issues are known to compound the damaging effects of disaster on survivors. The Gender and Emergency Management Guidelines were developed collaboratively as part of 2016 All on Board project which aimed to reduce the compounding effects of gender on disaster impact through the development of national gender and emergency guidelines to fill a gap in Australian knowledge, policy and practice'.
The award recognises ‘exemplary national significance’ and was also awarded for the ‘Community Trauma Toolkit’ developed by Australian National University & Emerging Minds, in consultation with the University of Queensland.  [The Toolkit] is 'a comprehensive trauma-informed strength-based approach to educating key workforces and families about infant and child mental health' in disaster.

Our sincere thanks to AIDR and everyone involved, not least the women who inspired this work.

Learn more about the 2019 National Resilient Australia Awards here.
DV after disasters - in the news
The past week has seen increased interest in increased domestic violence after disasters with wide media coverage of the GAD Pod’s research. The early and distressing start to the 2019/2020 fire season across Australia intensifies the need for greater awareness of the increase. An initial misreading of our research, ultimately led to positive and widespread coverage of the implications of disasters for exacerbation of violence against women. Click on each heading to open the link:
Channel 7 TV news report
Channel 9 article

The Conversation
‘Domestic violence will spike  in the bushfire aftermath and governments can no  longer ignore it’

As a side note, although drawing attention to this important issue, the authors include an often cited but misleading statistic: ‘This means men are three times more likely to die in bushfires compared with women.’ This holds true only for the 100 years to 2008.  A more relevant statistic is that 40% of females died in Australian bushfires in the 50 years to 2008 (rising to 42% on Black Saturday).
NSW, Sydney, QLD bushfires updates: Fury after activist links firefighters to domestic violence

A particularly insightful article was written by Jacqui Watt from No To Violence.

Destroy the Joint (DTJ)
The DTJ facebook page originally had a post where they were unaware of Australian research into DV in disasters
Several people commented to alert them to our research, and this post from the GAD Pod was published soon after.
Our post was shared by 44 and had ‘likes’ from 327, with one person commenting, ‘As a Black Saturday survivor can say all this is true. I broke myself holding it together for everyone else - my relationship ultimately ended - hopefully lessons learned help other fire affected communities & changes society's responses’.
16 days of activism against gender based violence
- and training for the emergency sector
The 16 days of activism began on 25/11/2019 and offered a further avenue to promote its relevance within the emergency sector. Protest marches were held across the country and photos (left) show the WHIN team in Melbourne and a well-attended march in Bendigo. The CFA team is holding a banner stating, ‘CFA says NO to family violence’.
Early bushfires  - resources for evacuating
Last week, Commissioner Andrew Crisp announced a rare 'Code Red' day for parts of north central Victoria. Anticipation of bad bushfire conditions was proven with over 60 fires in Victoria. Thanks to the massive efforts of all involved, property loss was kept to a minimum and no lives were lost. Read these guidelines and articles to be prepared for next time:

A ‘Neighbourhood Safer Place’ also known as a ‘Bushfire Place of Last Resort’ (NSP-BPLR) is a place of last resort when all other bushfire plans have failed. Find yours here.

Emergency Management Victoria and the CFA offer answers to FAQs.
Need to take medications when evacuating?

 Evacuating with a baby?
Keeping pets and animals safe – inspiration from art
Amritmurti Eve Lowrey is a young illustrator currently living in London. Originally from Rural North-East Victoria, Amrit grew up surrounded by native flora and fauna, giving her a deep connection and respect for nature from a young age. This constant connection to land and country can be seen in all her works as she uses watercolours to depict Australiana scenes. Amrit was also a young teenager during the Victorian Black Saturday bushfires and remembers the devastation that hit her region. Though living abroad now, she wanted to create these illustrations in support of the current NSW, QLD, and now WA fires back home.  Amrit writes:
‘I’m very happy for people to use the illustration on Instagram or other social media platforms if it's for a similar reason: Helping & Informing.’

‘I created this Illustration to act as a guide to remember to have a Fire Safety Plan that not only covers your immediate family members, but includes your farm animals too. Often we don’t believe a disaster can effect us as an individual until it’s on our doorstep. I want this illustration to promote making those plans well in advance before any potential fire threats. If you live in these bushfire zones, which many of us do, you need to stay up to date, and keep informed.’
‘I was very concerned for my 80 year old neighbour in Sydney. He lives alone in a home that backs onto National Parkland. On a day of Catastrophic fire danger,  I kept thinking, “Would he be informed enough to know to leave? Would someone on our street check on him if things took a turn for the worse?” Everyone instinctively looks to protect their own. I worried about those who didn’t have someone, and for domestic pets who may not have been included in the fire plan and can be left behind in the panic. I created the illustration to encourage people to have their fire plan well in advance, and to look after each other in the community so no-one is left behind or uninformed.’
Note from the GAD Pod: © belongs to the artist, so please use only as requested, alongside acknowledgement of the artist. It would be greatly appreciated if you’d let the GAD Pod or Amritmurti Eve Lowrey know how you’re using the image. (
The Gender Equality Bill 2019 is now before the Victorian Parliament. It is, indeed, ‘a once in a generation opportunity to improve gender equality in Victoria’.
Congratulations to all involved in developing this Bill. If passed, the Bill will require the Victorian public sector, local councils and universities (with more than 50 employees) to meet new obligations to drive progress on gender equality in the workplace and the community.
WHIN’s CEO, Helen Riseborough welcomed the Bill:
‘It’s been a big week for gender equality this week, with the First Reading of the Gender Equality Bill in Parliament on Tuesday and the full detail released yesterday afternoon, along with explanatory memoranda. 
The Bill sets a bold agenda within the public sector (which has been clearly defined to include local councils and universities), to mandate gender equality action auditing, planning and reporting for all organisations over 50 people in size. And it established a Gender Equality Public Sector Commissioner to oversee this work.
The very interesting development is the inclusion of gender equality targets and quotas (the power to set them under the Act) and the referral to VCAT in circumstances where compliance is not occurring. 
There is enormous opportunity for gender equality advocates in this piece of legislation - capacity building, education & training, and expansion beyond the public sector.’

The GAD Pod also welcomes this Gender Equality Bill, and applauds the Victorian Government for the accountability inherent in this proposed legislation. 
Read more, including the Bill itself.
Activism at the Margins
RMIT’s Activism at the Margins conference will be held February 10-12, 2020 in Melbourne:

‘Driven by desires to dismantle entrenched power structures, populism and autocracy, and to save the Earth, people are beginning at the grassroots and connecting with activists internationally …
We have married the lessons of women, Indigenous, black and gay liberation movements of the 60s and 70s with organising against racism and discrimination of the 80s and 90s with new models and tools of resistance in the digital age. Protests are now transformed by new technologies and social media, allowing people to assemble, share experiences and give voice to perspectives that would otherwise be excluded.

How do we make sense of these protest movements in the digital age and in relation to social change over time? This conference offers a chance for pause, reflection and critical engagement of this complex question.’

Professor GARY FOLEY (Moondani Balluk, Victoria University) leads an eminent group of keynote speakers.

Book here

Copyright © 2019 Gender and Disaster Pod, All rights reserved.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp