Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Students call for leaders to address rape culture

Students call for leaders to address rape culture


Victoria University of Wellington Students’ Association (VUWSA) is calling for the government to recognize the recent controversy surrounding diplomat Muhammad Rizalman bin Ismail as a symptom of wider issues of rape culture in New Zealand.

VUWSA’s Welfare Vice President, Rick Zwaan, says that “our leaders need to be addressing the roots of what leads to sexual assaults rather than debating who is to blame for MFAT’s loss of face.”

“No one should have to go through what this young woman did, yet students and Brooklyn residents live in fear every day due to the conditions in which they are live and walk home” says Mr Zwaan.

VUWSA has a long history of advocating for both cultural and infrastructural changes in the Wellington community that are needed to ensure all residents are safe at all times. Over 300 students recently marched for a community without sexual violence as part of the ‘Let Me Go Home’ event held in response to multiple sexual assaults that occurred on the Boyd-Wilson field pathway, adjacent to Victoria University’s Kelburn Campus.

“What we saw at Let Me Go Home was a community coming together to show that we will not accept sexual assault as a given. Student’s identified that Brooklyn in particular was a priority area with a dense student population and few safe options of getting home at night.”

The current prioritisation of issues surrounding sexual assault is epitomised by the lack of initiative by the government to ensure that the diplomat's case was appropriately dealt with instead of ambiguous, informal channels of communication leading to inappropriate use of diplomatic immunity.

“Of the utmost importance in cases like this is the survivor's wellbeing. What occurs after charges are laid should be defined by what will ensure their safety and recovery. The structures in place should reflect the protection and support of the wronged, not the defense of those whose diplomatic power overshadows their capacity to commit such an abhorrent crime.”

VUWSA is calling for a targeted approach to end rape culture that ensures accused perpetrators such as Muhammad Rizalman bin Ismail are held fully accountable.

“Attention must be given primarily to education surrounding consent and the treatment of women as well as infrastructural improvements that will help Wellington residents feel safer in their own communities.”

“While only a major cultural shift in the consideration of sexuality, consent, and women's rights will end rape culture, improved lighting, bus services that run later, more frequently and with Fairer Fares, and panic stations will help residents get home without fear.”
“Our leaders, particularly in central and local government, need to be taking decisive action to prevent future cases, and ensure justice prevails for perpetrators, of sexual assault,” concludes Zwaan.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Parliament Today:

The Kids: OECD Report Shows Huge Impact Of Poverty On Education

A new report from the OECD has again highlighted the negative effects of poverty, showing that disadvantaged children in New Zealand are more than six times more likely to underachieve in maths than children from wealthier homes. More>>

ALSO:

Pacific: NZ Pledges $500,000 To Help Address Zika

“With the Zika virus now confirmed in a number of Pacific countries, New Zealand is committed to helping limit the impact and spread of the virus in the region,” says Mr McCully. “New Zealand will provide $250,000 as a contribution to the WHO to implement the Pacific Zika Action Plan, and a further $250,000 to enable countries in the region to respond rapidly if required." More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Police Commissioner 'Doesn’t Get Force Needs'

The Police Commissioner has let down the public and his own force by insisting the police have what they need despite it taking a year to solve a burglary and overwhelming number of officers saying they are under-resourced, says Labour’s Police spokesman Stuart Nash. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The US Pressure To Expand Our Role In Iraq

Foreign news services are being more forthcoming about what the “next 12 months” will entail – essentially, the defence ministers will be under US pressure to increase their “training” role preparatory to an assault on the city of Mosul in northern Iraq. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Restarts: Prime Minister’s Statement

Our policy agenda and legislative programme will reflect the Government’s four priorities: • to responsibly manage the Government’s finances • to build a more competitive and productive economy • to deliver better public services to New Zealanders, an • to support the rebuilding of Christchurch. More>>

ALSO:

NZEI Survey Report: Special Needs Students Missing Out

The survey revealed that around 16 percent of students were on schools’ special needs registers, but nearly 90 percent of schools’ special needs coordinators did not believe there was adequate support for students and their learning... More>>

ALSO:

Interim Report: Waitangi Tribunal On Ture Whenua Legislation

Labour on Proposed changes to Maori land rules: “To have Treaty Negotiations Minister Chris Finlayson dismiss findings as ‘bizarre’ is totally disingenuous and disrespectful. What’s bizarre is Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell stubbornly pushing through this Bill before the Waitangi Tribunal has even completed its report..." More>>

ALSO:

Spy Update: Appointment Of GCSB Acting Director

GCSB Chief Legal Advisor Lisa Fong will become the Acting Director of the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) from 15 February 2016, Minister Responsible for the GCSB Christopher Finlayson announced today. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news