No excuse for not working together on domestic violence
Social Development Spokesperson
17 June 2014 MEDIA STATEMENT
Bennett has no excuse for not working together on domestic violence
There is no excuse for Paula Bennett’s continued refusal to commit to working across parties to stop domestic violence and child abuse, Labour’s Social Development spokesperson Sue Moroney says.
“Ms Bennett confirmed this afternoon that she won’t be pursuing a cross-party approach to develop an accord on family violence as recommended by the Glenn inquiry, because ‘it was too close to the election’.
“The report provides a stark reminder that the current system isn’t working for our women and children. There should be no excuses as to why politicians can’t get together to make life better for them.
“Unfortunately National has a track record of turning the other way when it comes domestic violence.
“Not only did it refuse to participate in a cross-party working group convened by Labour in 2006 - well before any general election – and mooted for exactly the same reasons as those outlined in the Glenn report, but it has also canned a raft of initiatives aimed at tackling family violence.
“They included the Taskforce on Sexual Violence, disestablished in 2009; the Advocates for Children and Young People Who Witness Family Violence programme, disestablished in 2011; the Te Rito Collaborative Community Family Violence Prevention Fund, scrapped in 2011; and the Family Violence Education service, disestablished in 2011.
“As well as that baseline funding for Women’s Refuge has not increased under National, a number of community-based programmes look set to lose funding and the White Ribbon anti-violence campaign has been told it needs to become self-funded by 2015.
“Ms Bennett and her colleagues cannot use politics as an excuse here. Violence against women and children is an ugly blight on our country and we all need to work together to stop it.”