Feminism in its purest form is simply the quest for the equality of the sexes. I think we should all be feminists. Equality should be something that exists for everyone whatever your gender. Of course, over time there has been much debate over social and political rights, but at the core of the issue is equality for all.
What is your standpoint on the benefits of gender equality?
I believe that in an ideal world where men and women are equal, there are tremendous benefits for everyone in society. How many scientific, medical, social and educational advances would we as a community have had to live without if it weren't for women being 'allowed' to partake in all facets of life and work? Put simply, women offer a different perspective to men; women can be more intuitive; women can be tougher; women can be more gentle. Women can be any and all things, and there should be nothing stopping them from achieving what they set out to do. Success should be based on hard work and talent - not your gender.
Do you believe that a significant shift has been made in the way in which the media portray women?
Sometimes I am proud of the way the media has moved forward in the portrayal of women. And then, other times I am saddened by the way women are still objectified and the glass ceiling appears to be very real. I am very lucky that in the more than two decades of working for Seven News, I have been encouraged as a woman and we are breaking down the barriers. Women over the age of 40 appear everywhere in news media in Australia, and it wasn't very long ago that that was a rare occurrence.
What do you think can be done to change our culture of insidious behaviours that marginalise women?
The first thing we, as women, need to do is be excellent role models for the next generation. I often think about that with my own daughters and with the young women I teach and mentor at the University of the Sunshine Coast. I believe we owe it to them to be strong, to be forthright, to be educated in our views, and to enjoy each and every position we choose to hold. If we are role models for the young women, it is also just as important for our sons to see us as empowered and equal too. The young hold the key to the future on this issue.
There is a debate that it is not possible to be a feminist and love fashion at the same time, we don’t agree; what do you think?I definitely think you can be a feminist and love fashion. Feminism is about being equal - and having choice... The choice to love fashion, or not to love fashion. I choose to love fashion and still fiercely believe in equality for women. It would be a sad world if equality meant 'sameness'. It doesn't. It means I have a right to wear what I like, to follow whatever trends I choose, and to enjoy that process. Thankfully, I do!