International Women’s Day and WHIN: Statement about Theme

15 February 2023

In 2023, Women’s Health In the North will be proudly promoting the International Women’s Day (IWD) theme ‘Cracking the Code: Innovation for a Gender Equal Future’. For more messaging about this year’s ‘Cracking the Code’ theme, see this two-pager by UN Women Australia.

WHIN is adopting and aligning our theme with two credible, international organisations: UN Women Australia and International Women’s Development Agency (IWDA). Each organisation has a long history of advocating for women’s rights and gender equality internationally with the message ‘women’s rights are human rights’.

IWD was first borne out of labour movements for women’s rights at the turn of the 20th century in North America and across Europe. The social justice movement was grassroots until 1975 (International Women’s Year) when the United Nations adopted IWD on March 8 when it is still held. The IWD movement has since grown in reach and visibility globally to make IWD a central point for action, to build support for women’s rights and their full participation in the economy, politics, community and in everyday life. New research and a campaign by More Voices, More Representation highlights that 7 out of 10 women and gender-diverse people in Australia do not feel represented on IWD. This reinforces the need to align with the above international organisations.

We know that other IWD themes are promoted each year, including one by a corporate entity that has gained huge influence using search engine optimisation. There is no transparency about this organisation/site i.e. information about its origins, funding or whether it has a Board. In this context, WHIN choses to support the work of the international women’s organisations who work to promote the rights of women across the world on IWD – and throughout the year.