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Help prevent domestic violence for Women’s Day

Hon Steve Chadwick
Minister of Women’s Affairs
6 March 2008 Media Statement

Help prevent domestic violence for Women’s Day

Women’s Affairs Minister Steve Chadwick is urging all New Zealanders to help improve our appalling levels of family violence and sexual abuse, as part of International Women’s Day 2008.

The Minister is attending a Women’s Day function this evening with the Council of Trade Unions, and will host a breakfast in Parliament tomorrow morning for International Women’s Day, which is on Saturday 8th March.

“Two of the biggest issues facing New Zealand women at the moment are family violence and sexual abuse, and it’s up to all of us to make sure that more women suffering violence or abuse seek help and support”, says Steve Chadwick.

“The second phase of the Labour-led government’s ‘Campaign for Action on Family Violence’ has just been launched, which will add to awareness that family violence is not ok in our communities.

“The Ministry of Women’s Affairs is also researching why women don’t report family or sexual violence, why conviction rates are low and how the Labour-led government can improve the system and better support women seeking help.”

Steve Chadwick says the position of New Zealand women has improved in many areas, but there is still more work to do.

“New Zealand women were among the first in the world to get the right to vote and we’ve come a long way since then with better pay, working conditions and more flexible hours.”

The Labour-led government is committed to further improving opportunities for women with:

- 14 weeks paid parental leave

- 360,000 families benefiting from Working for Families policy

- 20 Hours Free Early Childhood Education for three and four year olds

- Four weeks annual leave.

“We’re currently focusing on improving the pay gap between men and women, as we still lag 12 per cent behind, and we’re also trying to increase the number of women represented on government boards and committees.

“Our ‘Action Plan for New Zealand Women’ also sets out a wide range of goals for women from a range of Departments, including Labour, Health and Social Development and Employment.”


ENDS

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