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Saving Our Children With An Open Family Court

Saving Our Children With An Open Family Court

Thursday 2 Sep 2004

Dr Muriel Newman - Press Releases - Social Welfare

ACT New Zealand Deputy Leader and Social Welfare Spokesman Dr Muriel Newman today urged Chief Family Court Judge Peter Boshier to continue his push for more openness in the Family Court.

"I urge Judge Boshier to support the fight against domestic violence and child abuse by having a Family Court that is open," Dr Muriel Newman said.

"The Care of Children Bill currently before Parliament is a step in the right direction towards greater openness, but it does not go far enough. As Judge Boshier is aware: if we want to stop child abuse, then the true stories that the court hears on a daily basis of what happens in violent households must be exposed.

"Child abuse and domestic violence are issues that attack the sensibilities of right-thinking law-abiding New Zealanders, who want to see every Kiwi child given the best possible chance to succeed.

"Only when we have a Family Court that is open to public scrutiny will the hard facts be known, and the problems recognised by the wider public.

"Judges, officials and social sector workers frequently tell us that protecting children is a community responsibility. Yet it is difficult for the community to accept what really needs to be done when the Family Court hides and protects the vast majority of abusers.

"Making the public acutely aware of the extent of violence that is being perpetrated in many homes around the country is the only way to bring about change. Then, and only then, will we be able to protect and nurture these children who are so vulnerable," Dr Newman said.

ENDS


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