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

 

Family violence law changes represent a fundamental shift

The passing of legislation to amend existing laws addressing family violence was an important step in the right direction, a major national domestic violence network said today. Merran Lawler, Kaiarahi of Te Kupenga Whakaoti Mahi Patunga/National Network of Stopping Violence Services said today "Last nights passing of the Family Violence Bill and Family Violence (Amendments) Bill address and respond to many of the concerns which front-line family violence workers have been raising for years - it represents a fundamental shift by focusing on victims' safety through the mechanism of holding perpetrators to account for their violent behaviours.

"Front line agencies know that the purpose of any intervention must be about ensuring the safety of the victim. But we also know that the safety of the victim is an issue only because of the behaviours of the perpetrator. It is pleasing that the new legislation recognises that too - allowing police not only to issue orders excluding the perpetrator from the home for an extended period (up from five to ten days) but also directing the perpetrator to be assessed for current and future risk they pose to the safety of their victim. Assessors will have the ability to identify what actions the perpetrator needs to take accept responsibility for and stop those behaviours. It's really starting to focus on what our member agencies, most of which work with perpetrators and victims, have been saying for years - we need to focus on risk assessment and management plans for the perpetrator and their behaviours rather than simply imposing obligations and pressures on a victim to ensure their own safety.

Ms Lawler said the provisions also went some way to addressing the need for more timely interventions. "When police issue a safety order against a perpetrator (usually when there has been an incident but no criminal charges have been laid), we offer support to the perpetrator to address their behaviours but there has been no obligation on them to accept the offer nor, in most cases, any funding available to provide the sort of behavioural change programme required. Front-line workers talk daily with perpetrators bound by police safety orders and those workers know that once the order expires the perpetrator will go home, continue their violence and, until they face criminal charges, no mandated intervention can occur. The new provision ensures that intervention can occur at the time a safety order is issued rather than waiting for the violence to escalate for intervention to be both mandated and funded through criminal court processes.

Of course, we will be closely monitoring how these reforms play out in practice. We would be concerned to see a significant increase in police safety orders issued instead of criminal charges being laid when those charges are warranted. That would most definitely undermine the strength of the message that perpetrators will be held to account for their behaviours".


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

a well

Wellness: Gordon Campbell On Ardern, Davos, And Wellbeing

The word “well-being” has a nice warm ring to it. So much so that the ‘wellbeing budget’ being touted by PM Jacinda Ardern at the rich folks’ club in Davos, Switzerland sounds more like a marketing slogan than an actual policy initiative.

Still, it is just as easy to forget that GDP – the common measure of how well an economy is performing – is also a marketing device. More>>

 

Gordon Campbell: On Why Shipping Is NZ’s New Trade Problem

So Jacinda Ardern and Theresa May have signed a piece of paper promising peace in our time when it comes to our trade with Britain... Brexit is not the only concern. More>>

ALSO:

Reshuffle: National Announces Spokesperson For Drug Reform

National Leader Simon Bridges has appointed Paula Bennett to the new position of Spokesperson for Drug Reform as the Government pushes ahead with its agenda of drug decriminalisation, to signal National’s commitment to holding them to account. More>>

ALSO:

KiwiBailed: KiwiBuild Head Officially Resigns

The head of Kiwibuild, Stephen Barclay has officially resigned from the role. In a statement issued on his behalf, it was announced that he would step down from today [Friday]. More>>

ALSO:

Welfare Stats: Rise In Hardship Numbers Shows Income Inadequacy

The latest Ministry of Social Development quarterly report show that a record number of people have received hardship assistance from work and income, with an additional 40,000 hardship payments made between September and December 2018, compared to the previous quarter of the same year... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On MBIE’s Social Media Scam

Given the ambit of MBIE’s work, almost any form of social activity could qualify as being part of MBIE’s brief, so the privacy threats posed by this training programme are extensive. The current oversight safeguards seem threadbare to non-existent. More>>

ALSO:

JusTrade: New Campaign For A 21th Century Trade Agenda

‘Critique is no longer enough. If anything is to really change, we need to step away from the existing framework and take a first-principles approach to rethinking what will work for the 21st century.’ More>>

Earlier:

Gordon Campbell: Thompson + Clark Are The Tip Of The Iceberg

How can we tell where and how any lines are being drawn? Oversight is not exactly robust. If it were, Thompson + Clark would have been out of contention for state security work ten years ago. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels