NZ Women MPs Ensure Support for Domestic Violence Victims
New Zealand Women MPs work together from across the House to ensure high-quality support for domestic violence victims in Wellington
The New Zealand Group of the Commonwealth Women Parliamentarians (CWP) is made up of women parliamentarians from the National, Labour, Green, New Zealand First, and Māori Parties. Last week, after a request from Co-Chairpersons, Louisa Wall MP and Maureen Pugh MP, representatives from the CWP, including Jan Logie MP, Tracey Martin MP, Poto Williams MP, and Hon Ruth Dyson MP, met with the Minister for Social Development, Hon Anne Tolley. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the funding needs of Shakti; the lead national provider for refugee and migrant culturally specialist family violence intervention and prevention services throughout New Zealand.
Shakti currently provides refuge centers, a 24/7 crisis line, and drop-in-centers in Auckland, Tauranga, Wellington, Christchurch, and Dunedin. The Ministry of Social Development is contracted to provide funding to all of Shakti’s refuge centers, except for Wellington, which places Shakti under enormous pressure to deliver life-saving services to the over 200 women referred each year by the Police alone.
We are delighted to report that Minister Tolley, on behalf of the Ministry of Social Development, has offered to fund the $50,000 operating shortfall for the Wellington refuge center. This will ensure that Wellington women in need will receive meaningful and sustainable support during their time of need. On behalf of CWP, “the Chairpersons would like to express our sincere thanks to Minister Tolley for taking the time to meet with us and for being so responsive to the needs of domestic violence victims in Wellington.”
The CWP New Zealand Group is part of one of the largest international women’s organisations in the world. Founded in 1989, it is a unique forum for women parliamentarians from across the political spectrum to come together and promote gender equality in all spheres of society. The CWP works towards increasing women’s representation in Parliament and the mainstreaming of gender considerations in legislative and policy decisions.