Brittany Higgins will push Prime Minister Scott Morrison for changes

Daniel McCulloch and staff writersAAP
VideoThousands of women have marched at events across the country to demand action in response to allegations of workplace abuse and gendered violence. In Canberra, in front of Parliament House, Brittany Higgins made a powerful speech decrying 'the sys...

Brittany Higgins plans to push Scott Morrison for changes to workplace culture in Parliament House when the two meet as early as next week.

Ms Higgins, who alleges she was raped by a colleague in a federal minister’s office two years ago, has accepted an invitation to meet with the prime minister.

“In the spirit of reform, I have publicly and privately accepted the Prime Minister’s invitation to meet,” she said in a tweet today.

“This decision wasn’t made lightly.

“However, things cannot be improved unless people are willing to come together and speak plainly about these difficult issues.”

In a second tweet posted shortly afterwards, Ms Higgins said it was disappointing she had not heard from the prime minister’s office since they initially made contact on April 6.

“I’m hopeful the meeting will proceed,” she said.

“After two months, a national protest and countless other horrifying stories, the time for action is now.”

The update comes more than two months after she went public with rape allegations.

Ms Higgins says she was sexually assaulted by a fellow ministerial adviser in Parliament House while she was working for the coalition government in 2019.

The claims triggered national debate about the treatment of women and the handling of sexual assault complaints.

Ms Higgins has been highly critical of senior ministers’ response to her initial complaint, which has been reinstated with police.

The prime minister has instigated an inquiry into whether his office was briefing journalists against Ms Higgins’ partner in an attempt to discredit and undermine her.

Linda Reynolds, the minister whose parliamentary office was the site of the alleged attack, told 6PR radio she was assisting police with their inquiries.

“The AFP are investigating her allegations and I am assisting the AFP with their investigation.”

She said cultural change and improved behaviour was needed in Parliament House.

“Across all parties we have got a lot of work to do to really make some significant change in how our parliament operates.”

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