Frances has a passion to see women achieve their potential and shape their communities. Having started her career in hotel management she soon developed strong leadership and management skills which saw her take on senior human resources roles in the health sector. Frances’ natural drive and pursuit of excellence resulted in her former employer gaining accreditation as an Employer of Choice for Women, and ACT Employer of the Year for Apprenticeships & Traineeships.
Frances was drawn to YWCA Canberra in 2010 as she had always identified as a feminist, and has a strong belief in social justice, which she attributes to her mother’s influence. Having faced discrimination during her own career journey, she is now committed to being a strong voice for women.
Frances has been the CEO of YWCA Canberra since 2013. She has led YWCA Canberra through a significant change processes in integrated services delivery, corporate service review and evaluation frameworks. In response to identified community need, including during the COVID-19 crisis, Frances has spearheaded a range of new programs in the areas of addressing domestic and family violence and women’s homelessness, as well as empowering women to take authentic leadership journeys.
Frances is the Chair of the ACT Council of Social Service, and volunteers on a variety of other boards and committees including: National Older Women’s Housing and Homelessness Working Group and Homelessness Australia. Frances is a former Board Director of WESNET, former Chair of the ACT Ministerial Advisory Committee for Women, former Co-Chair of Anti-Poverty Week in the ACT and former Board Director of No Sweat Fashion.
In 2015, Frances received an Edna Ryan Award for advancing the status of women in the ACT. In 2016, Frances was named ACT Leader of the Year at the Australian Leadership Excellence Awards run by the Australian Institute of Leadership and Management. She also attended Commission for the Status of Women in New York in 2017, 2018 and 2019.
On 4 December, our Hong Kong sister YWCA held an international conference to celebrate its 100th anniversary, under the theme Solidarity for a Better World. Keynote speakers included Mohammad Naciri, Regional Director of UN Women for Asia and the Pacific, and Mira Rizeq, President of World YWCA. YWCA Canberra CEO Frances Crimmins was invited to […]
Last week, the Workplace Gender Equality Agency released the latest Gender Equality Scorecard, based on data from thousands of Australian employers covering over 4 million employees. Progress in closing the gender pay gap remains glacial, with a 0.7 per cent reduction from 20.8 per cent to 20.1 per cent and some marginal improvements in levels […]
Sadly, we continue to have no progress in 2020, with figures showing that the national gender pay gap has not improved since last year and remains at 14 per cent for full-time employees, a difference of $253.60 each week. And I fear that the progress we have made over the last few decades has a […]
COVID-19 has created unprecedented social and economic change. The broadscale closure of recreational activities and entertainment venues due to mandated social distancing regulations have transformed our social and economic lives to mere online operations. Some are fortunate enough to have retained their jobs and are working from home; many others no longer have a job, […]
You’d have to be a neophyte in the ways of social media and online news to have avoided the hashtag #MyMum over the last week. Sparked by a comments made by the Opposition Leader Bill Shorten in relation to his late mother and the intellectual pursuits she delayed in order to singlehandedly raise her young family, #MyMum spontaneously galvanised users who paid tribute to their mothers and grandmothers who […]
For one week every year, in the middle of the Australian winter, the issue of homelessness and housing stress features heavily in public conversation. National Homelessness Week runs from 6-13 August and this year’s theme is ‘Ending Homelessness Together’. It is typically a week of campaigning by community stakeholders and legislators to bring attention to […]
On Friday 24 November, YWCA Canberra Executive Director, Frances Crimmins addressed the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science White Ribbon Day morning tea. Each year White Ribbon Day coincides with the start of 16 Days of Activism for the elimination of gender-based violence on 25 November. Below is a transcript of Frances’ speech which includes […]
YWCA Canberra recently partnered with the Office for Women to deliver an inaugural Gender Equality Forum. Stemming from the mutual objective of reinvigorating efforts to progress gender equality, the event drew together leaders from ACT Government Directorates, the for purpose sector, and the private sector to make the case for change. The forum kicked off […]
(First published in the YWCA Canberra 2016-17 Annual Report.) I’d like to start with an acknowledgment of our staff, Board Directors, members, corporate partners, and friends. It is only with your skill, dedication and support that this organisation continues to meet the needs of our diverse community. There have been many highlights this year and […]
The ACT Government has called for pre-budget submissions to influence their budget allocations. You might recall in the last budget round, YWCA Canberra was alarmed by the lack of gendered analysis and funding allocated to the women’s plan. This time we will be calling for the ACT Government to fulfil its commitment to a Triple […]
The ACT Government recently handed down the 2017-2018 budget, and we have undertaken an analysis of what the implications are for local women, girls, and their families. If you read the headlines, it’s clear what the Government has prioritised this year. It’s the tale of the ACT’s growing population, with an urgent need to meet […]
Over the past twelve months, YWCA Canberra has been focusing our advocacy efforts on ensuring that gender equality and social inclusion have been prioritized in the lead up to the ACT election. In March, we launched our election advocacy platform, Every woman, every child, every day, calling on the incoming ACT government to take action […]
This week, there was much discussion about domestic violence leave provisions for federal public servants. We believe that specific domestic violence leave provisions are essential, and as the Australian Public Service is the largest employer in the ACT, this is an issue that we feel strongly about. Please see below an open letter on this issue to Senator […]
This opinion editorial was published in The Canberra Times on 21 November 2015, to start the conversation about meaningful action to end violence against women as part of our participation in the global campaign 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence. This year, we’ve heard a lot of public commentary on the shocking prevalence of violence against women in […]
Despite literally decades of equal pay and anti-sex discrimination legislation, how do we still arrive, in 2015, at a widening gender pay gap? And a plateauing of women in leadership roles in the workforce? To put this into context, legislation that has been enacted in Australia over more than the past 50 years includes: • […]