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It’s Time For Men To Be Men And Not Bullies

26 November 2004

It’s Time For Men To Be Men And Not Bullies

New Zealand First social services spokesperson Bill Gudgeon says he’s appalled by the number of women falling victim to domestic violence at the hands of men who think it is okay to abuse women.

Mr Gudgeon’s comments follow a report stating one in five women treated at Auckland and Middlemore hospitals’ emergency departments say they have been victims of partner abuse.

“Survey results for Auckland and Waikato have indicated that between 33 and 39 percent of women questioned had been victims of physical and/or sexual violence and the number of women and children using refuges has increased,” said Mr Gudgeon.

“The incidence of domestic violence is underestimated, and is a major problem for New Zealand women. It has been blamed for up to 27 deaths each year.

“This is a very sad inditement of men in New Zealand who think that they can commit such cowardly acts of abuse towards women, and then hide behind their partner's fear.

“Obviously, more needs to be done to protect those that are victims of violence and abuse in the home.

“More robust protection and enforcement provisions and the need for greater collaboration between Police, Child Youth and Family, Courts, Women’s Refuge and the Family Violence Prevention Project are essential if we are serious about combating the incidence of domestic violence.

“But such measures are ambulance at the bottom of the hill type solutions. What is just as important are the lessons we teach our children and reinforce throughout their lives that violence is wrong.

“We need to take a zero-tolerance stance on domestic violence. Domestic violence is a crime and offenders need to be held to account for their actions," Mr Gudgeon said.

ENDS

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