Kristine Ziwica

Kristine Ziwica is a Melbourne-based columnist and consultant who has 20 years' experience working in Australia, the United States and the UK on human rights and gender equality campaigns.

Fears of a “Mum-cession”: experts warn of pandemic motherhood penalty

As the pandemic continues to wreak havoc on our collective health and the health of the economy, plunging Australia into its first recession in 29 years (something economists have more aptly called a “she-cession” due to the over-representation of women amongst job losses), experts are now warning of a “pandemic motherhood penalty” that could have long lasting consequences for mothers.

On childcare, we can't 'waste the crisis' and go back to the old system

In a remarkable turn of events, yesterday Education Minister Dan Tehan urged the parents of Australia to send their little comrades to kindy. Well, not quite. But he did announce that all childcare – yes, essentially all — would be free from Sunday night onwards for the next three months, with the strong possibility that the new arrangements would remain in place for as long as six months. “These are extraordinary times,” the Minister told the ABC’s Patricia Karvelas in an interview shortly a

The one thing I know for certain is that I feel uncertain

I have been a bit quiet lately. As someone whose profession is commentary and analysis — I “write from a position of expertise” on issues of gender equality and feminism (so my professional bio says) – I have felt that, on this occasion, I don’t have any particular expertise to offer. And more importantly, in recent times I haven’t had any of the certainty that usually comes along with my belief in my own expertise. If I say something, I usually have confidence in my facts and my ability to bac

Weinstein verdict is ultimately an unsatisfactory victory

Annabella Sciorra, Mimi Haleyi, Jessica Mann, Dawn Dunning and the nearly 90 women who have come forward with allegations of sexual assault and rape against the now infamous film producer Harvey Weinstein. These are the women I’m thinking about today. And the millions of women who bore their soul as part of #MeToo, hoping Weinstein’s trial would deliver accountability – not just to an abhorrent individual, but to an abhorrent system that enabled men like Weinstein to go unchecked for so long.

The Weinstein verdict is coming but it's no 'referendum on #MeToo'

Yesterday, the jury at Harvey Weinstein’s rape trial began deliberations. A verdict could be imminent. However, regardless of the outcome, the result will not, as some have suggested, be a “referendum on #MeToo”. At best, a verdict could deliver some form of justice for some victims and — by proxy — others. Also, one alleged predator could be held accountable and locked away, ensuring more women are not harmed by his actions. At worst, the verdict could highlight, yet again, the bias of the cr

No we don’t need a ‘Wellness Barbie’

As if we need further reason to interrogate the ubiquity and bastardisation of the concept of self-care as brought to you by the modern day wellness industrial complex, last week Mattel debuted a new “Wellness” Barbie collection. “Barbie knows the way to be one’s best is to give yourself the best care!”, proclaims the advertising copy. “Barbie introduces girls to the benefits of self-care through play,” it goes on, as it spruiks various accessories, including athleisure, a face mask play set, f

The case Harvey Weinstein’s lawyer is really making

Donna Rotunno, Harvey Weinstein’s defence lawyer, made headlines last week when she gave an interview to the New York Times’ “The Daily” podcast, in which she was asked by journalist Megan Twohey, one of two journalists who broke the Weinstein story for The Times, whether she had ever experienced sexual assault. “I have not . . . because I would never put myself in that position . . . I have always made choices from college age on, where I never drank too much. I never went home with someone th
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