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Tracey And Spicer

Published:
17/09/2016
Author:
Think Local

Tracey Spicer has been a member of every Australian family for the last 28 years thanks to her presence in our living rooms from anchoring and presenting our biggest news, current affairs and lifestyle TV shows.

  As well as broadcasting, she regularly scribes for newspapers, magazines, online and travel - usually fighting for the underdog and women's rights - and she's currently writing her memoirs.

   "It's got to be in by September so I'm madly trying to get it done in time," says Tracey as we meet at one of her favourite coffee shops, Cooh Organic Cafe In North Curl "I'm loving going through a whole bunch

Tracey Spicer has been a member of every Australian family for the last 28 years thanks to her presence in our living rooms from anchoring and presenting our biggest news, current affairs and lifestyle TV shows.

  As well as broadcasting, she regularly scribes for newspapers, magazines, online and travel - usually fighting for the underdog and women's rights - and she's currently writing her memoirs.

   "It's got to be in by September so I'm madly trying to get it done in time," says Tracey as we meet at one of her favourite coffee shops, Cooh Organic Cafe In North Curl "I'm loving going through a whole bunch of memories and thinking about what we got up as teenagers and in our twenties - I'm thankful there's no photographic evidence!

    “I've been having a blast listening to all the music again - punk the Sex Pistols, punk, Blonde, Happy Mondays, Stone Roses and all of that era.”

   Tracey, who grew up in Redcliffe in Queensland and is mum to Taj, 11, and Grace, nine, says the tome is, “humorous with a feisty feminist angle, and features a lot of the challenges all women face.” It will include her controversial legal battle with Network Ten.

   Tracey had been at the station for almost 14 years when she was fired by email after returning from maternity leave in 2006. She took the network to court for discrimination to make a stand, “for all women”.

   “Things have changed a lot,” she claims, "especially immediately after I took legal action, because the networks were frightened of sidelining women who were pregnant or had young babies. They didn't want it to happen again.

     “It happened at a time when advertisers were seeking older women and mothers - gone are the days of the Barbie doll - so things have improved dramatically. But it's still going on, that blokey culture - and even groping - in the workplace. Some women take it because they're afraid they'll lose their jobs if they go to HR. I want to use the rest of my career being a voice for other women.”

As the national convener for the Media and Arts Alliance's (MEAA) Women in Media, Tracey is passionate about equality - and is about to go to all the heads of the media organisations to push for more flexibility in the workplace.

    "Diversity is better for their bottom line," she explains, and when it comes down to maternity and that kind of thing, we want the workplace to offer more flexibility for men. It shouldn't be just up to the women to find a job that works around day care. Parents have equal responsibility.

   "I know a lot of men who would love to be more hands on with the kids, but their workplace won't allow it. Or they're scared that if they work less hours they won't get be promoted, in the same way that women have suffered for decades."

    Pro-euthanasia Tracey is also the ambassador of numerous charities, including World Vision and ActionAid, and recently formed the Pancreatic Alliance with a number of charities to lobby the government for more funding in memory of her mum, who passed way from it after being diagnosed in 1999.

  "As I get older, I realise community is everything," she explains, "and I always encourage to the kids to help out - if you've got the opportunity to give back, I think everyone should. That's one thing I love about living on the northern beaches. It's a great community spirit and people are always campaigning for local Issues, which is truly tremendous."

 

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