Kicking goals for women and girls

Thank you to everyone who contributed to the conversation. We're now considering your feedback.

We know sport and recreation fosters respect and fair-mindedness while also supporting the physical and mental well-being of our residents.

Fair access is about ensuring everyone who wants to, can fully participate and reach their full potential, which also means equal opportunity and access to their local sporting and recreational facilities.

Council's draft Fair Access Policy seeks to address barriers historically experienced, by women and girls particularly, and identify ways to improve access to, and use of, Council-owned community sports infrastructure.

This includes, for example, appropriate change rooms along with equitable training and competition timetabling.

The draft Policy also includes proposed actions Council can take including:

  • Ensuring safer and more inclusive infrastructure to improve the training and playing experience for women, girls, and gender-diverse people (including change rooms, bathrooms and amenities, sports lighting, car parks, pathways, sensory rooms, prayer rooms etc.)
  • Ensuring Council-owned recreation and leisure centres are managed in line with a Fair Access Policy, and
  • Providing support to sports clubs to develop women in leadership or governance roles.

Read more about the draft Fair Access Policy and draft Action Plan.

Under the State Government's Fair Access Roadmap, all Victorian Council's are required to have a Fair Access Policy in place by 1 July 2024 to be eligible to receive infrastructure funding.

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Policy Principles

The draft Policy and Action Plan is based on six principles of inclusivity, full participation, equitable access and use, equal representation, encouraging and supporting user groups, and prioritising user groups committed to equality. These principles have been developed by the Office for Women in Sport and Recreation, Sport and Recreation Victoria and VicHealth, in consultation with representatives from local government, State sport and recreation sectors.
  • Community sports infrastructure and environments are genuinely welcoming, safe, and inclusive.

  • Women and girls can fully participate in all aspects of community sport and active recreation, including as player, coach, administrator, official, volunteer, and spectator.

  • Women and girls will have equitable access to and use of community sport infrastructure:

      • of the highest quality available and most convenient
      • at the best and most popular competition and training times and locations
      • to support existing and new participation opportunities, and a variety of sports.
        • Women and girls should be equitably represented in leadership and governance roles.

        • Encourage and support all user groups who access and use community sport infrastructure to understand, adopt, and implement gender-equitable access and use practices.

        • Prioritise access, use, and support to all user groups who demonstrate an ongoing commitment to gender-equitable access and use of allocated community sports infrastructure.

        The Policy

        Under the State Government's Fair Access Roadmap, all Victorian Councils are required to have a Fair Access Policy in place by 1 July 2024.

        The overriding objective of the draft Fair Access Policy is to improve access to, and use of, community sports infrastructure by women and girls.

        The draft Policy seeks to address barriers experienced by women and girls in accessing and using community sports infrastructure. It will aim to ensure that all Council-owned facilities that deliver community sports implement welcoming, accessible and inclusive environments , while also ensuring appropriate infrastructure to support women and girls.

        Read the draft Policy in full

        Action Plan

        The draft Action Plan acknowledges sports clubs and sporting codes are at differing levels of implementing fair access. It aims to support clubs to enact change and play a role in increasing engagement of women, girls, and gender-diverse people in community sports clubs.

        Read the draft Action Plan in full

        Fair Access and Clubs

        The draft Fair Access Policy anticipates community sporting facilities to be made available for everyone.

        Ultimately, this means all members of our community should have fair and reasonable access to the ‘best’ training and game times as well as to social and change room facilities.

        If you're a club administrator or volunteer, you can download a copy of the "Fair Access Policy Roadmap – what is it and why is it needed?" document prepared by the State Government from the Document Library.

        If you'd like to speak directly with a Council officer about how the draft Policy and Action Plan might impact your club, request a conversation with one of our team using the form below.