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Festive cheer not festive fear this Christmas

Festive cheer not festive fear this Christmas

Stress is an inevitable part of the silly season but Labour is reminding people this year that Christmas is a time of peace and goodwill, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Sue Moroney says.

“Domestic and sexual violence increases over the Christmas period when tempers fray. The combination of financial and family stress, mixed with alcohol, makes for a dangerous combination for innocent family members.

“Over the past five years there has been an average of 436 arrests on Christmas Day, with assaults and disorderly behaviour the most common offences committed.

“Crime statistics show ‘dwelling’ and sexual assaults have risen dramatically in most parts of New Zealand since National came to office.

“Sexual assaults have increased 127 per cent in Northland since 2007/2008, 86 per cent in the Bay of plenty and 74 per cent in Wellington. Dwelling assaults are up 53 per cent in the Eastern districts, 32 per cent in Canterbury and 26 per cent in Waikato over the same period.

“The alleged West Auckland rapes have shown sexual violence is a growing problem in New Zealand. The Government must do more to address this.

“National is not publically reporting family violence statistics. Incidents are reported in euphemistically named categories such as ‘dwelling assaults”. All that does is hide the true picture.

“Better recording of domestic assaults would not only ensure the needs of family violence victims are met, but allow more work to be done to prevent New Zealand’s ‘dark secret’.

“Labour is calling on National to show it cares about domestic violence victims by picking up my Member’s Bill which would improve the reporting of these hideous crimes,” Sue Moroney says.

ends

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