Crowds at the March4Justice Rally Demand Change

 

SPEAKER after speaker at Coffs Harbour’s March4Justice Rally called out Scott Morrison for failing to adequately address sexual harassment.

Addressing a crowd of approximately five hundred people the speakers called out a number of injustices against women particularly those of a sexual harassment nature and said “Enough is enough”.

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The crowd in Coffs Harbour and the crowd in Bellingen joined protests around the country as women rallied on the grounds of Parliament House to demand a better response by the government to sexual harassment including Brittany Higgin’s rape allegation and the alleged rape by Attorney-General Christian Porter of a woman who later took her own life.

Speakers included Dr Lisa Milne from Southern Cross University who said one in five women have reported sexual violence and called for more equal gender representation in Parliament.

“We are marching for all women to ensure the governments around Australia explore sexual assault and rape not just in the workplace but for everywhere.

“This is for every woman because every single woman in this country has the right to be safe in every single space she inhabits.

“At home, at work and in Parliament House,” she said.

In the crowd I spoke with Helen Rhodes and Anna Woltschenko.

Ms Rhodes said, “I’m so disgusted by our Prime Minister’s response to what is happening.

“Why is it Mr Morrison automatically believes Porter?

“The default should not be to believe him.

“That’s garbage.

“The default should be to believe the victim.”

Ms Wolschenko listed the reasons she was rallying.

“I’m here today for Brittany Hiiggins raped in the Defence Minister’s office then called a lying cow.

“I’m here for those fifteen and sixteen year old girls who were bashed in Sydney by those three men.

“I’m here for the hundreds of girls who have now come forward complaining about sexual assault in schools.

“I’m also here for the women suffering from domestic violence.

“They are the unspoken women who suffer in silence a lot of them and have done for years so that’s why I am marching today.”

Joelle Bridger from the recently formed Older Womens’ Network explained her reasons for joining the rally.

“I’m here because we are over fifty percent of the population and we still don’t have equal rights and I’m tired of the three and a half thousand year patriarchy.

“It’s time for women to feel safe.

“To wear what they like whenever they like, to walk where they like without being threatened or abused.”

In Bellingen over two hundred people attended the rally held on Sunday.

Participants were welcomed to country by Aunty Alison and speakers included Lily Isobella, Elisa Hall, Jennie Fenton and Chris Marks amongst others.

A mock funeral was held for the patriarchy.

 

By Sandra MOON

 

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