Australia joins its Pacific partners to celebrate International Women’s Day

This International Women’s Day, Australia stands with its partners in Samoa to celebrate women’s achievements and their critical role in effective COVID-19 responses.

International Women’s Day (IWD) is held on 8 March every year around the world to celebrate the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women.

‘This International Women’s Day we join our partners around the Pacific and in Samoa to celebrate women’s achievements and ensure that in responding to COVID-19 we listen to women and meet their priorities and needs,’ said Australian High Commissioner, Her Excellency Sara Moriarty.

‘Recognising how COVID-19 affects women and men differently is fundamental to an effective economic response and recovery in Samoa, and a priority for the Australian Government’s Partnerships for Recovery.’

An analysis of significant gender equality opportunities and challenges during COVID-19 is detailed in a Thematic Brief for ‘Gender and COVID-19 in the Pacific: Gendered impacts and recommendations for response’.

The Thematic Brief, significantly updated for release on IWD, has been developed through Australia’s Pacific Women Shaping Pacific Development (Pacific Women) program in collaboration with its Pacific partners – Pacific Women connects a portfolio of more than 160 partners implementing over 170 initiatives. It can be found at

‘We know women in the Pacific have been disproportionately impacted by border closures, lockdowns and school closures.; They face far higher economic insecurity and vulnerability, unemployment and their burden of unpaid childcare and housework has increased.’

‘Given women are impacted more than men by crises such as COVID-19, their inclusion in response and recovery is absolutely critical and we continue to support the government and partners of Samoa for a gender-inclusive approach,’ said Ms Moriarty.

‘The same can be said about the need to prioritise women and girls with disabilities decision-making and response planning.’

The Australian Government remains committed to its gender equality and social inclusion (GESI) partnerships in Samoa especially during crises such as COVID-19.

‘This International Women’s Day let’s celebrate women’s many achievements and acknowledge the need to support a COVID-19 response that considers the different priorities of women and men,’ said Ms Moriarty.

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