Every single year, we get to celebrate the countless wins for women and their rights around the world. And since it’s International Women’s Day, we thought we’d remind you of how truly amazing women have been over the past year.
#1 Ireland Legalised Abortion
In May last year, Irish men and women voted (almost) unanimously to legalise abortion. And what a historic milestone it was. It drew out the highest number of voters for social issues and has since put humongous pressure on Northern Ireland to follow in their footsteps. The Irish parliament then passed the law in December, stating that a woman is allowed to get an abortion ‘on demand’ whereby there is a fatal foetal abnormality or where the physical or mental health of the mother is in danger.
#2 Saudi Arabian Women Are Now Legally Allowed To Drive
June 2018 engulfed us in more women’s right history. A previous ban on Saudi Arabian women driving was officially lifted, allowing them to legally obtain licenses and get behind the wheel for the first time ever. The new law means that women are allowed to be considerably more independent, whereas before were having to be driven around by hired drivers or their husbands. You and I both know that driving allows anyone to have an immense amount of independence, so to be able to now do so is incredible for Saudi women.
#3 The #MeToo Campaign Went Viral, And Rightly So
Every man and his dog, including an abundance of celebrities, have supported the #MeToo campaign, and continue to do so into this year. After accusations of sexual harassment and violence by various actors, singers and other people in power, women and men across the world have supported the campaign by sharing their own stories and raising both money and awareness for the cause in hope that someday the suffering will stop.
#4 Beyonce Was The First Black Woman To Headline Coachella
Who run the world? GIRLS. Bey is a prime example of female empowerment and is a role model for millions of women around the globe. Just after IWD 2018, Beyonce played her 27 song set at Coachella and sent the world into a frenzy. The set became the most watched live streamed performance to date, as 41 million viewers joined to watch her slay the festival and make history.
#5 Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Became The Youngest Person To Be Elected Into Congress
It’s been a year full of firsts for the American Congress and women have been at the forefront of it all. At just 28 years old, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez became not only the youngest woman but the youngest person to be elected into Congress as a representative for New York.
#6 Nadia Murad Won The Nobel Peace Prize, Along With Denis Mukwege
The 25 year old, who was abducted by ISIS in 2018, won the award along with Denis Mukwege (Doctor from the Democratic Republic of the Congo) for their continued work towards their work to end sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict. She now works with women who are victims of abuse and human trafficking along with Mukwege, who as a gynecologist, treats women who have been raped by armed rebels. A pure and very real example of women and men working together towards the greater good and one that follows this years’ IWD theme #BalanceForBetter.
#7 102-Year-Old, Irene O’Shea, Became The Oldest Skydiver
A woman we should all aspire to become the grand old age of 102. Irene completed the 14,000 ft plunge on her birthday in December in order to raise money and awareness for Motor Neurone Disease, which her daughter sadly passed away from. You go, girl!
#8 Female Surfers Won The Fight For Equal Pay
A win that was close to home for Aussies around the country. In September, the World Surf League announced that women would receive equal pay for doing exactly the same job as the men in the water from 2019. With the pay being almost half of what men won in 2018, the change is not only an incredible bonus for female surfers but sends a huge message to fellow sports and organisations throughout the world.
#9 Meghan Markle Continues To Break All Kinds Of Old School Royal Traditions
Meghan Markle continues to break royal traditions as well as boundaries. Let’s just hope the Queen doesn’t notice the lack of stockings from her outfits. The internet has fired up a storm over the past year after Meghan has been seen closing her own car doors (how dare she?!), sporting dark nail polish and wearing a strapless dress, god forbid. This woman is redefining the monarchy and it’s about bloody time.
#10 New Western Sydney airport named after aviation pioneer Nancy-Bird Walton
It was announced this week that the new Sydney airport would be aptly named after Nancy-Bird Walton, who was the founder of the Australian Women’s Pilots’ Association (AWPA). Nancy spent her entire career with people questioning her ability because she was a female and even named her autobiography “My God! It’s a Woman”. Even ScoMo described the moment as ‘sky high’.
Image Source: The Independent Singapore, Billboard, WAMU, The Women’s Game, The Australian