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The Elsie Conference is chaired by Professor Anne Summers AO, Professor of Domestic and Family Violence, at UTS Business School.

The version of the program available on this website will always be the most current version. Download a pdf version of the program here:





9:00am - 9:30am

Acknowledgement of Country & Conference Opening:

  • Acknowledgement of Country - Aunty Glendra Stubbs

  • Conference Introduction - Carl Rhodes, Dean UTS Business School

  • Video Welcome Address - The Hon Anthony Albanese, Prime Minister of Australia

  • Address - Senator the Hon Jenny McAllister, Assistant Minister for Climate Change and Energy and Senator for NSW introduced by Amy Persson, Interim Pro Vice-Chancellor (Social Justice and Inclusion), Centre for Social Justice and Inclusion, University of Technology Sydney

Great Hall, Building 1 (Tower), UTS

9:30am - 10:00am

The Elsie Story

Great Hall, Building 1 (Tower), UTS

10:00am - 10:45am

Opening Address: Journey to Justice with Christine Robinson, CEO Wirringa Baiya Aboriginal Women's Legal Centre

Great Hall, Building 1 (Tower), UTS

10:45am - 11:00am

Morning Tea

Great Hall, Building 1 (Tower), UTS

11:00am - 12:00pm

The History of Multicultural Services for Women in Need


Convenor: Maha Abdo OAM, CEO Muslim Women Australia. 


Great Hall, Building 1 (Tower), UTS

12:00pm - 1:00pm

The First Ten Years: Memory, Myth and Milestones

What were the goals and the important issues for the first feminist refuges? A group of women active in the first years of three refuges discuss what mattered to them and if these same goals and issues are relevant today. This discussion will be continued in an open discussion workshop on Saturday.

Convenor: Ludo McFerran


Vivien Johnson, Marrickville Womens Refuge

Di Otto, Half Way House, Victoria

Bobbie Townsend, Elsie Women’s Refuge

Great Hall, Building 1 (Tower), UTS

1:00pm - 1:15pm

Music Performance:

OUTLOUD – Respect Program

Featuring Condell Park Public School

Great Hall, Building 1 (Tower), UTS

1:15pm - 2:15pm

Lunch Break

Great Hall, Building 1 (Tower), UTS

2:15pm - 3:15pm

Running a Refuge Today

Panel discussion among today's generation of refuge managers, with audience Q&A. Lessons learnt from the past and challenges for the future.

Convenor: Delia Donovan, CEO Domestic Violence NSW


Great Hall, Building 1 (Tower), UTS

3:15pm - 3:45pm

Interlude - Commemoration of women killed by domestic violence

Great Hall, Building 1 (Tower), UTS

3:45pm - 4:00pm


Great Hall, Building 1 (Tower), UTS

4:00pm - 5:30pm

Keynote event: Expert Panel with audience Q&A

How has violence changed since 1974? Is it better or worse? How are we responding to coercive control and the newer, non-physical forms of violence such as financial abuse and technology-enabled abuse? 

Moderator: Virginia Haussegger 

Expert Panel: 

Great Hall, Building 1 (Tower), UTS

5:30pm - 7:00pm


7:00pm - 10:00pm

Conference Dinner- with special guest Ray Martin AM

UTS Aerial Function Centre


On Saturday (including a lunch break), there will be smaller sessions, workshops, and presentations run throughout the day.

9:00am - 10:00am: Session one

10:15am - 11:15am: Session two

11:30am - 12:30pm: Session three

12:30pm - 1:15pm: Lunch break

1:15pm - 2:15pm: Session four

2:30 - 4pm: Closing Ceremony (UTS Great Hall), including Elsie Award PresentationHosted by The Hon. Virginia Bell AC SC

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