WOMEN INTEND VOTING AGAINST MORRISON’S LACK OF ACTION ON CHILDCARE REFORM AND GENDER EQUALITY: NEW POLLING
An analysis of Essential Report polling for The Parenthood has found women’s voting intention has moved away from the Coalition since October 2020, driven by a lack of action on early childhood education and care reform and gender equality.
Labor has gained a five-point increase among women aged 18-34 and 35-54 following its budget-in-reply speech in October 2020 which included a comprehensive early education and care package, representing a significant differentiation among the policies of the two major parties.
In addition, while there’s been no change to Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s approval rating amongst men, his support among women dropped 16% in six weeks.
Recent Essential polling also shows a majority of Australians (60%), both men and women, support free early childhood education and care as a measure for improving women’s equality.
The Parenthood Executive Director Georgie Dent said, “This polling clearly shows Australian women voters are ready for child care reform and are willing to reward politicians who commit to delivering action.
“The numbers indicate an intensifying contest for the votes of women. Confidence in Scott Morrison as a Prime Minister is falling among women and he risks losing more women’s votes unless he acts urgently and substantively on gender inequality. Reforming the funding of early childhood education and care system that currently disadvantages women cannot be overlooked.
“While this polling can’t predict whether a women’s ‘protest’ vote will hold until the next Federal Election, it does reflect the growing dissatisfaction among women that will only intensify pressure on the Coalition if left unaddressed.
“The high cost of early learning limits the choices Australian women can make when it comes to work and family.
“The Federal Government needs to acknowledge the unprecedented momentum for meaningful reform to address inequity and increase the investment in ECEC.”
“The upcoming budget must deliver substantial new investment to ensure universally accessible, high quality early childhood education for at least two years before school, as well as increases in paid parental leave. The return of the Women’s Budget Statement is also critical.
“This Budget must provide practical support for women who have children, families and young children. Without very clear substantive changes and systemic policy shifts the Federal government’s commitment to women can only be judged as rhetoric.”