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Grace Tame & Brittany Higgins

Address to the National Press Club

Wednesday, 9 February 2022

The National Press Club of Australia

Photography: Chris Ferguson for Marie Claire.

Grace Tame is an outspoken advocate for survivors of sexual assault, particularly those who were abused in institutional settings. She was named the 2021 Australian of the Year.

From age 15, Grace was groomed and raped by her 58-year-old maths teacher, who was found guilty and jailed for his crimes. However, under Tasmania’s sexual-assault victim gag laws, Grace couldn’t legally speak out about her experience – despite the perpetrator and media being free to do so.  Grace has used her voice to push for legal reform and raise public awareness about the impacts of sexual violence.

She is a regular guest speaker for high-profile events and television programs and uses her media profile to advocate for other vulnerable groups in the community. In December 2021, she launched the Grace Tame Foundation, with an aim of driving cultural and structural change, with the ultimate goal of a future free from the sexual abuse of children and others

Brittany Higgins is a former political staffer, and now a Visiting Fellow at the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership at the Australian National University.

She has been credited with sparking debate on gender-based violence and safety within Australian politics - and the workplace in general - following her brave decision to publicly allege she was raped by a colleague inside Parliament House.

She has continued to publicly advocate for change, notably at the March4Justice rally in Canberra in March 2021. 

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