Home' Navy News : November 10th 2011 Contents SEX Discrimination Commissioner
Elizabeth Broderick's Report of
the Review into the Treatment of
Women at ADFA makes 31 recom-
mendations to build on reform that
began in the late 1990s.
The review, which was released
on November 3, acknowledged that
the experiences of male and female
midshipmen and officer cadets at
the Academy were for the most part
positive but also identified areas
of ADFA culture that could be
The report states that female
cadets "overwhelmingly" felt that
ADFA was a place where they were
However, the review also found
that "further structural and cultur-
al reform is necessary if ADFA is
to become the excellent tri-service
training and academic institution it
aspires to be".
Ms Broderick has led the review
to examine the treatment of women
at ADFA and the wider ADF since
April 1 at the request of Defence
Minister Stephen Smith.
Phase 1 of the review has dealt
specifically with the treatment of
women at ADFA in the wake of the
so-called "Skype Incident".
Ms Broderick said the review did
not investigate the incident but rather
undertook a wide-ranging cultural
review with a specific focus on the
impact of that culture on women.
"It examined the adequacy and
appropriateness of measures to pro-
mote gender equality and to ensure
women's safety," Ms Broderick said.
Mr Smith said Phase 1 found that
there had been positive improve-
ments in the culture at the Academy
since the mid-1990s.
"However, the review also found
widespread, low-level sexual har-
assment, inadequate levels of super-
vision, a cumbersome complaints
processes and an equity and diver-
sity environment marked by sanction
rather than positive engagement," Mr
He said the report also recom-
mended improvements to areas
including providing quality staffing
at ADFA, the management of com-
plaints, accommodation for students
and mechanisms to better manage
the risk of injury to female cadets.
"I have asked the Secretary
of Defence and the Chief of the
Defence Force to determine the best
way forward in formally adopting
and implementing the review recom-
mendations," he said.
Implementing Phase 1 would also
be considered alongside the imple-
mentation of the five reviews into
the aspects of Defence culture com-
missioned at the same time as Ms
Broderick's review. These cover:
use of alcohol in the ADF;
social media in Defence;
personal conduct of ADF person-
management of incidents and
Defence Australian Public Service
women's leadership pathways.
Mr Smith said the issues can-
vassed in the reviews were complex
and a comprehensive response was
He said an independent audit
would be conducted after 12 months
from the release of the report in line
with the terms of reference.
The audit will report on the
implementation of the recommenda-
tions and make any further recom-
mendations necessary to advance the
treatment of women at ADFA.
Mr Smith said the Broderick
Review would assist Defence to fur-
ther develop the strategic direction
for the Academy.
"Importantly, it also enables
Defence to build on its commitment
to zero tolerance for unacceptable
behaviour and providing a safe and
equitable workplace within ADFA
and across Defence."
The Broderick Review is available at www.
November 10, 2011
SUBMISSIONS are being called for
Phase 2 of the Review into Treatment
of Women in the ADF chaired by
Sex Discrimination Commissioner
Phase 2 will look at the treatment of
women beyond ADFA to the broader
ADF and examine the effectiveness of
ADF cultural change strategies and ini-
tiatives to improve leadership pathways
and career development for women.
The first phase, the Report of the
Review into the Treatment of Women
at ADFA, was released on November 3
and is available for download from the
Australian Human Rights Commission
Ms Broderick said it was important to
note that the review would not be inves-
tigating or formulating conclusions in
relation to specific allegations or com-
"This is not our role under the
terms of reference for our review," Ms
She said the review appreciated and
supported the ADF's endeavours to
recruit and retain the finest candidates
for a first-class defence force.
"We also appreciate the ongoing con-
structive efforts by the ADF to improve
gender equality initiatives for women's
career development in the ADF, imple-
ment strategies to ensure women's safety
and to prevent sexual harassment, sexual
abuse and sex discrimination within the
"In fact, Phase 2 presents an excel-
lent opportunity for us to identify the
strengths of the organisation and high-
light positive practices which could be
"Where challenges remain, we hope
to suggest strategies that will assist the
ADF in this regard."
Ms Broderick said the review was
keen to hear from personnel of different
ranks and roles in all three Services, and
there were several ways to do this.
The review will visit various bases
across the country in the coming months
to talk to ADF personnel and consult
"We'll speak to people individually,
host focus groups and conduct an anony-
mous short survey that will allow the
review team to collect information about
attitudes, as well as demographic data.
"We'll also conduct qualitative and
quantitative research that will compare
the ADF experience to those of similar
defence forces overseas."
Written submissions are also invit-
ed and can be made via the Australian
Human Rights Commission website
from November 5 to December 4.
Personnel can also speak confiden-
tially with a review team member on a
toll free 1800 656 945.
More detail is also included in an
advertisement on page 31 in this issue of
Ms Broderick said the review team
encouraged everyone to make a submis-
sion, contact the review team or partici-
pate in a focus group.
"Your experience, views and insights
will help inform the direction of the
review and, importantly, the recommen-
dations that will be developed. We look
forward to working with you."
Phase 2 call for
PROGRESS: The Report of the Review into the Treatment of Women at
ADFA was released on November 3.
Photo: Lauren Black
ADFA report released
AFGHAN National Security Forces
supported by Australia's Special
Operations Task Group have seized
and destroyed about 4000kg of poppy
seed during an operation in the
Kajaki region of Helmand province,
The seed is believed to have been
cached in preparation for next year's
The operation in late October also
uncovered 30kg of processed opium.
Chief of Joint Operations LTGEN
Ash Power said destroying the poppy
seed would significantly affect the insur-
gent-aligned syndicate's ability to har-
vest a crop in the 2012 growing season.
"This high-grade seed is crucial to
sustaining production and is highly val-
ued and protected," LTGEN Power said.
Afghan and Australian forces came
under fire as they entered the targeted
area and elements remained in contact
for the duration of the mission.
"The ferocity of the insurgent
response to the mission is a clear indica-
tor of just how important this cache was
to their plans," LTGEN Power said.
No members of the Special
Operations Task Group or the Afghan
National Interdiction Unit were killed or
wounded during the mission.
Australian Special Forces are sup-
porting the National Interdiction Unit in
a concerted effort to disrupt insurgent
command, control and finance networks
in southern Afghanistan.
Troops destroy insurgent drug plans
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