NEWS: A Safe Space for Women
By Bridgette Glover The women of UNE finally have a room of their own, designed to act as their secure place on campus. The long awaited Women’s Space at UNE was officially opened on 11 June, and was a huge victory for the members of the UNE’s Women Society, who had started campaigning for it early last year.
The grand opening saw Amelia Roberts, founder of the Women’s Society, introduce the speakers of the night after welcoming UNE’s Chief Financial Officer Michelle Clark and acting Vice-Chancellor Annabelle Duncan as the VIP guests.
UNEWS President Kate Wood gave the first speech of the night, with a heart-warming thank you and a depiction of the journey up until that point, which naturally took place in an enchanted forest accompanied by pixies and wizards.
Annabelle Duncan followed, and after ripping up her speech that was according to her, full of “boring statistics” she explained how she wished a Women’s Space had existed when she was younger. Duncan continued with Wood’s theme saying how pleased she was with “the magical aura of the room."
This is what it’s about. It’s your university, and it’s here for the students. The rest of us are just servants.”
Annabelle was presented with a tea pot from UNEWS as a thank you gift.
The space according to Wood is a place where women “if they want or need, for any reason, to get away from the company of men."
Some women need a space to breastfeed, and others may be seeking a place to avoid the stress of gender politics."
I think the greatest benefit is to the Islamic women on campus. They now have a place to eat and to relax in a female only environment.”
The space is located in the old Safety and Security Office of the University courtyard, right next to the Nucleus office.
It is open to all women on campus. For more information on UNEWS or the Women’s Space, email firstname.lastname@example.org.