Gender responsive budgeting and the financing of maternity care in the Australian federation: addressing gender equality including in emergencies and disasters

Gender responsive budgeting and the financing of maternity care in the Australian federation: addressing gender equality including in emergencies and disasters
Photo by Catherine Constable (detail).

Registration and Zoom details are available here.

This webinar is the next in the “Human Rights, Gender Budgeting and Progressing Breastfeeding in 2020 and Beyond, Series”, and will be held on Monday, 29 April 2024, 6:00 PM -8:00 PM Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST). The webinar is sponsored by the Australian National University’s Australian Centre for Federalism and hosted by the ANU Crawford School’s Tax and Transfer Policy Institute, with support from the ANU Gender Institute and the Breastfeeding Promotion Network of India.

During the COVID-19 emergency, women and girls suffered egregious violations of their human rights. Despite authoritative health guidance emphasising that breastfeeding should be protected, supported and encouraged, the Human Rights of Women and Children to breastfeeding were violated through the proliferation of maternity care barriers to breastfeeding. This included unnecessary separation of newborns from mothers, and inappropriate promotion of commercial food products for mothers and infants and young children through health channels. Our 2020-21 webinars aimed to galvanise efforts to improve breastfeeding policies and funding in national budgets during the COVID 19 emergency, by applying gender budgeting and World Breastfeeding Trends initiative (WBTi) tools to Australian policy.

This 2024 webinar will build on our earlier program to interrogate the ways in which Australia’s federal financial system influences maternity services responses to crisis. It will focus on how Australia’s federal financial arrangements and crisis management systems shaped management of maternity services and infant and young child feeding support during emergencies and disasters since 2020. In particular, we will ask, where and how are decisions made on maternity care funding, such as for implementing the WHO/UNICEF Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding and the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative (a Key Priority Action in the Australian National Breastfeeding Strategy)?

International and national experts in human rights, health financing in federal systems, gender-responsive budgeting, maternity care and midwifery, and breastfeeding support in emergencies and disasters, will provide informed commentary on how money moves from Australia’s central government through to maternity care services. Speakers will also give a frontline perspective on how funding processes & priorities for infant and maternal nutrition and maternity care evolved during natural and human-made disasters such as those that have unfolded in Afghanistan, Ukraine, and Gaza.

Details of the first introductory webinar and following series are available here.


Registration and Zoom details are available here - Program below.


Date & time

Mon 29 Apr 2024, 6–8pm


Online (virtual)


Diane Paul


Updated:  23 April 2024/Responsible Officer:  Head of School/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications