With the active support of then WA MP Carol Martin, Marion Scrymgour (NT) and Linda Burney (NSW), EMILY’s List established the Partnership for Equity Network (PEN) in 2003.
This program was developed to increase opportunities for indigenous women to campaign and win parliamentary office.
In 2008/2009, a new program was launched: Sisters Doing it for Themselves.
This program – a partnership between EMILY’s List, Koori Women Mean Business and YWCA Victoria – includes a “how to” guide for indigenous women’s political participation; training and speed-date mentoring events designed to bring young Indigenous women together with Indigenous women leaders in the political, community and business sectors.
These annual events alternate between regional and urban areas.
Since 2003, 10 Indigenous women have been elected to Australian parliaments with the support of EMILY’s List and, in 2013, Nova Peris became the first Indigenous woman to be elected to the Senate. In 2016, Linda Burney became the first Indigenous woman to be elected to the House of Representatives.