Union of Australian Women Newcastle branch gears up to celebrate International Women's Day

EVERY woman has a story - that is the motto of the Union of Australian Women Newcastle branch.

The branch is one of three in the country that participates in peace activities and campaigns for equal rights for women.

Next weekend, the group will host its 64th annual dinner to celebrate International Women's Day.

International Women's Day, on March 8, was first held in 1911 in Copenhagen, Denmark, to call for women's right to vote, work and hold public office.

Union of Australian Women Newcastle branch treasurer Janet Copley has been with the group since it was founded in 1950 and has witnessed tectonic changes in the treatment of women in the workplace through the decades.

"When we first started out, women were really downtrodden," Ms Copley said.

"But things are better now; women are encouraged to have a career and no longer have to fight for that right."

However, Ms Copley said there was still some ground to be covered in gaining full equality for women, such as equal pay.

■ Union of Australian Women Newcastle branch International Women's Day Dinner, next Friday, March 7, at 6.30pm at Adamstown Club. Guest speaker Judith Conway on her work in Timor-Leste. Cost is $35 a person. Phone Janet Mundie on 4946 8217.

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