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More organisations should ‘Say No’ to Violence against women

More organisations should ‘Say No’ to Violence against women

At the Zonta NZ Conference in Queenstown this weekend, Ms Heather Henare was announced “Zonta Woman of the Biennium’.

This is an honour awarded every two years to an outstanding woman who has made a significant personal contribution to advancing the status of women through “leadership, service provision and/or advocacy”.

In a panel presentation at the conference Ms Henare thanked Zonta for this acknowledgement and also for it’s International campaign ‘Zonta Says No to violence against women.’

“New Zealand needs more organisations to speak out for women and children whose lives have been devastated by domestic violence,” said Ms Henare.

“The combination of increasing poverty, the de-gendering of violence to women, sweeping changes to the benefit and Family Court systems and a glut of affordable housing, give me the impression that right now is a very difficult time to be a woman trying to escape domestic violence in this country.”

The Zonta Says No Campaign is an International Campaign which supports the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women’s focus this year on fighting violence against women. Zonta International President, Ms Lynn McKenzie, a Wellington woman, says “do not look away, join us to say no to violence against women.”

Ms Henare, who attended the UN Commission meeting this year called on the New Zealand government to uphold its obligations to the Commission.

“At that Commission this government signed up to the elimination and prevention of all forms of violence against women and girls. We need to see tangible action and supportive policies and legislation to help protect women and children. A society that does not protect its most vulnerable is a society that will not prosper.”

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