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Law commission report on women welcomed

2000 web siteJudith Tizard, Auckland Central MP today welcomed the Law Commission report on Womens Access to Justice in New Zealand.

"Women have been telling me that this is a major issue for them since I came into Parliament in 1990. It is obvious to me and every other constituency MP who talks to women that the justice system is not delivering for them. It is too costly; it is too formal; it is too confrontational; and only those with power and money can get real access," she said.

"It is not justice for women.

"Most women come into contact with the justice system when they are fighting to protect their families after the breakdown of relationships or to protect and maintain their financial position and that of their children. Most women find the experience traumatising and expensive in every aspect.

"I welcome Law Commissioner, Joanne Morris's four year study. It confirms my impressions and those of the hundreds of women and the dozens of groups that I have spoken to over the last ten years. This report is a real wake up call to the New Zealand Government and to our justice system.

"It is all very well for us to sign up to international agreements like CEDAW (Convention for the Elemination of Discrimation Against Women) but unless we put structures in place here in New Zealand that allow women to protect themselves and their children, all New Zealanders will continue to suffer.

"Justice is only justice if you have access to it," Judith Tizard said.

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