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Gender Crime Laws In For A Revamp - Minister

Media Release
Hon Phil Goff

GENDER SPECIFIC CRIME LAWS IN FOR A REVAMP

"Parts of the Crimes Act are still based on a Nineteenth Century assumption that woman are incapable of committing a range of sexual offences", Justice Minister, Phil Goff, said today.

He has signalled his intention to get an amendment to the Crimes Act onto the legislative agenda to end the outdated and discriminatory nature of some of the gender-based sexual offences.

"For many offences, there is no female offender offence equivalent to those committed by males. Yet these crimes do happen. There are real-live female sexual offenders and real-life victims.

"The current law has seen some prosecutions fail, and has meant that accident compensation for mental injury has sometimes not been available to male victims of abuse by females.

"Over the last two years cases have come to light where boys have been abused by older women. No charges could be brought against the abusers because no offence existed in the law and the victims have consequently not been entitled to ACC compensation for counselling.

"It makes no sense and should have been remedied a long time ago".

Mr Goff has asked officials to develop the legislative amendments needed to bring the law up to date. He hopes that a Crimes Amendment Bill to implement the changes will be ready for introduction into Parliament later this year.

ENDS

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