In Melbourne, Australia. wearing black and clutching signs reading “enough is enough”, thousands took to the streets across Australia to oppose violence and discrimination against women, as a reckoning in the country’s halls of power sparked by multiple allegations of rape continued to grow.
The organisers said that the marches in at least 40 cities represented an overflow of outrage from women about a problem that has gone unaddressed for too long, and it was estimated that 110,000 people attended the protests nationwide.
With the next national election possibly coming as early as August, experts say it’s something that the conservative government, which has come under stinging criticism for the way it’s handled the accusations, ignores at its own peril.
The public outrage in Australia over violence against women came as thousands in London joined demonstrations over the killing of 33-year-old Sarah Everard, who vanished while walking home at night.
In Australia, the message to the government was that there were enormous numbers of women throughout the country that have had enough, quite frankly, of their shocking response to sexual assault and harassment, said Janine Hendry, the main organiser of the marches, who said they want change and they want it now.
In Canberra, Australia’s capital, the police estimated that 5,000 to 6,000 demonstrators assembled on the lawn outside Parliament House, where legislators met.
Brittany Higgins, a former political aide whose allegation that she was raped in Parliament House in 2019 rocked the nation’s halls of power and provoked marches, appeared at the Canberra demonstration.
She said there was a horrible societal acceptance of sexual violence in Australia, and she said that her story was on the front page for the sole reason that it was a stinging warning to women that if it can happen in Parliament House, it could happen anywhere.
She said she felt that she’d been treated like a political problem after she made her allegation to co-workers in the governing centre-right Liberal Party and that she was raped inside Parliament House by a co-worker, and for so long it felt like the people around her only cared because of where it occurred and what it might mean for them.
On the other side of the doors of Parliament House, Prime Minister Scott Morrison attracted jeers from the opposition Labour Party but then refused to join the demonstrations and instead invited a small gathering of organisers to meet with him in his office.
But violence against women will continue, even with every demonstration that lingers, and it’s shocking, and Australia needs much more effective law in their country, and it’s far time politicians supported a stronger Bill.
The issue of discrimination is gender, and it should be looked into because every human is equal by nature and should be treated equally, and we should be respecting our opposite gender.
Perhaps Scott Morrison needs to quit because enough is enough, and I’m sure the Australian people won’t be quelled.