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Royal Commission call on family breakdown

Gordon Copeland Press Release
For Immediate Release
Monday, 14th April 2008

Royal Commission call on family breakdown

An independent MP has completed terms of reference for a Royal Commission on family breakdown, family violence, and child abuse, in the wake of recent crime statistics.

Gordon Copeland says he is calling on the government to implement the enquiry because statistics confirm what people already know; namely that those statistics get worse by the day. Mr Copeland says his proposed terms of reference are very comprehensive, including causes such as overcrowding and home ownership versus renting, stress relating to work/life balance, seven day trading, changes in family form, married/defacto/sole parenting, and income adequacy.

He says the royal commission is linked to Kiwi party leader Larry Baldock's petition. “It will flow through from the petition which seeks a referendum on the same issues.”

Mr Copeland says the government must take on board the average New Zealanders revulsion at the current level of domestic violence. “They (the government) came out trumpeting reduction in murders after release of the statistics but fortunately some media saw past that and highlighted the domestic violence figures.”

“There also seems to be this fixation that family violence stats are up only because of increased reporting. But a 41% increase in the Waikato, for example, is not acceptable. That province experienced 561 more violent offences, was that merely to do with reporting? I don’t think so.”

“When I’m asking for petition signatures people on the street agree that the government needs to get real in relation to these issues.” He says New Zealanders feel this current government are giving no more than lip service to family violence.

“If the referendum on this issue goes ahead, I have no doubt that it will receive near 100% support from kiwis.”


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