Gender Equality Act

Making HERstory

Gippsland Women’s Health celebrates and congratulates all involved in the passing of a landmark legislation, which will drive organisational and cultural change to create sustained, enduring and measurable action on gender equality.

Minister for Women Gabrielle Williams said the Bill was an Australian first and represented a once in a generation opportunity to influence policy, social norms, cultural expectations and attitudes across Victoria.

The legislation applies to public sector workplaces and will help close the gender pay gap, improve gender equality at all levels of the workforce and reduce workplace sexual harassment.

Increasing women’s workforce participation means greater productivity, a boost in economic output and more financially secure families.

The Bill requires public sector organisations, universities and local councils to develop and implement Gender Equality Action Plans every four years – including data on the current state of gender equality in the organisation and strategies for achieving workplace gender equality.

Actions Required

Under the Gender Equality Act, Victorian public sector organisations, universities and local councils with 50 or more employees will be required to:

  • Develop and implement a Gender Equality Action Plan every four years, which will include the results of a workplace gender audit and strategies for improving workplace gender equality
  • Publicly report every two years on progress made towards achieving gender equality
  • Promote gender equality across their policies, programs and services, including by undertaking gender impact assessments that consider the different impacts their work can have on Victorian communities.

These obligations will commence on 31 March 2021, giving organisations time to understand and prepare to meet their legislative requirements. Organisations will be provided with a range of implementation support and guidance materials.

For more information and to view the Bill please visit the website at

Read the Victorian Government’s media release