Bathurst prepares to welcome CWA of NSW conference delegates for week of policy discussion

Members from around the state will come together in Bathurst this month for the Country Women’s Association (CWA) of NSW’s annual conference.

About 600 members are expected to attend this year’s conference from 8 – 11 May at the Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre to help determine future policy direction and priorities.

More than 18 motions proposed by branches throughout the state will be debated, encompassing education, health, the environment, transport and telecommunications.

Motions this year include:
•    Calling for the State and Federal governments to take coordinated and urgent action to address the national housing crisis facing women (put forward by Nowra Branch);
•    Advocating for the establishment of a dedicated Palliative Care Unit in all regional hospitals in NSW (Collie Branch);
•    Advocating for the sponsorship of international nurses to work in regional and remote areas of NSW (Broken Hill Branch);
•    Calling for the inclusion of an education program in NSW and ACT schools highlighting the negative health impacts of vaping and e-cigarettes (Berry Branch);
•    Requiring a compulsory basic First Aid training for all learner drivers in NSW (Goulburn Evening Branch);
•    Strengthening legislation to protect koala habitat in NSW (Lismore Branch); and
•    Mandate a state-wide pet cat curfew and empowering all NSW Councils to enforce containment (CWA of NSW Agricultural & Environmental committee).

Additionally, the organisation’s State Executive Committee will discuss prior to the start of the conference the option of bringing forward an urgency motion on the matter of mandatory life sentencing for those who kill emergency services workers, following the recent death of NSW paramedic Steven Tougher.

“The motions delegates will be discussing at this year’s conference once again reflect the different perspectives, experiences and priorities of our membership and the issues of greatest concern to their branches and their communities,” said CWA of NSW President Joy Beames.

“Advocating to policy-makers is at the heart of our organisation and each of the successful motions at this year’s conference will form the platform for our lobbying priorities for the next 12 months.”

The conference’s official opening is on Monday morning, May 8, and includes this year’s keynote address presented by Shanna Whan, creator and founder of Sober in the Country and the 2022 Australian of the Year Local Hero winner.

“We’re looking forward to all coming together in Bathurst this year to not only celebrate what has been another satisfying and successful year, but most importantly to discuss the issues of the highest significance to our members,” Joy said.

“There can sometimes be quite robust debate around different motions, but this is the result of the diversity of today’s membership and ensures a range of views that not only strengthens our organisation but guarantees a broad and dynamic advocacy platform,” Joy said.

The CWA is the largest women’s organisation in Australia, with more than 400 branches and almost 8000 members. Members have been supporting women, children and their rural and regional communities for more than a century.


For any media inquiries, please contact Kylie Galbraith on 0411 480 208.