Lucy Woodcock honoured

Lucy Woodcock ... 'way ahead of her time'

Lucy Woodcock (1880–1968), a Federation Life Member whose work helped achieve salary restoration, a teacher’s certificate, equal pay and opportunities for female teachers, has been honoured by Erskineville Public School, which dedicated its new school hall in her name.

“She was way ahead of her time, and the important work she did helped establish many of the current rights and freedoms enjoyed by all of us today,” a City of Sydney media release states. The school hall’s dedication was attended in September by about 300 people and addressed by Ms Woodcock’s biographer, UTS Professor Emeritus Heather Goodall.

Lucy Woodcock was for an extraordinary 20 years the union’s Senior Vice-President and one of Federation’s first delegates to the ACTU.

“A tireless campaigner for the rights of women teachers, she opposed the Married Women (Lecturers and Teachers) Dismissal Act of 1932 (repealed 1947) and was prominent in campaigns to achieve salary restoration, a teachers’ certificate and equal pay and opportunities for female teachers,” the Australian Dictionary of Biography states.A woman of wide interests, Lucy Woodcock “carried her crusades for equality, justice and peace beyond her profession”, being prominent in the peace movement, co-founding the Australia-China Society and helping to set up the Australian Aborigines Evangelical Fellowship.