“I just think it’s un-Australian what’s happened here and I can’t understand for a second why Melbourne University would tolerate it,” the Opposition Leader said.
“I would expect members of parliament who want to see a fair and decent and passionate society which treats women equally … to be up in arms about this.”
At an April 13 lecture on Islamic Jihad in Syria, signs directed “sisters” to the back of the theatre, and “brothers” to the front.
Gender segregation was also encouraged at an information session for prospective Australian Islamic Peace Conference volunteers held by the Islamic Research and Educational Academy at the university’s Public Lecture Theatre on March 10.
The university said the events were held by external organisations and it would not intervene to prevent the practice.
Mr Abbott said that was unacceptable.
“I find that absolutely extraordinary that a great liberal institution would take a huge leap back into the dark ages,” he said.
Opposition spokeswoman for the status of women Michaelia Cash called on Prime Minister Julia Gillard and her Minister for the Status of Women, Julie Collins, to condemn the gender segregation on campus.
“The Coalition strongly supports gender equality and will not tolerate any culture or society in Australia that refuses to accept this fundamental principle of gender equality,” she said.
“Women in Australian society are equal to men regardless of their race, religion and sex and we recognise women and men as co-contributors to the economic and social wellbeing of Australia.”
There has so far been no response from Minister Collins.Source: The Australian – Abbott condemns Melbourne University over sex segregation at Islamic events
- Demand for Australian university places plateaus (craighill.net)
- Controversy surrounds Melbourne University’s sex-segregated Islamic event (3aw.com.au)
- When ‘sisters’ are sent to the back of the room, ask questions (crikey.com.au)
- Another case of Muslim sex-segregated seating in the UK (whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com)
- Why sex Segregation? – Part 1 (beautyofsitr.wordpress.com)
- Atheist Hypocrisy and Gender Segregation (thedebateinitiative.com)
- Top News: UCL bans Islamic group from campus in row over segregated seating (guardian.co.uk)
- Segregating the Sexes (thesearchmagazine.wordpress.com)
- Islamic sexual segregation imposed by force at a UCL event in London (skeptical-science.com)
- Atheists Shocked to Find Some Orthodox Muslims Voluntarily Segregate by Sex (loonwatch.com)
- Occupational Sex Segregation: Under- or-Over representation of Women (inequalitygaps.org)