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Take a stand on violence against women

Hon Paula Bennett
Social Development & Employment Minister
24 November 2008 Media Statement

Take a stand on violence against women on White Ribbon Day

White Ribbon Day is an opportunity to reinforce the message that society does not condone violence against women, says Social Development and Employment Minister Paula Bennett.

“We must continue to challenge the attitudes and behaviours that tolerate violence against women.”

Tomorrow is White Ribbon Day and by wearing a white ribbon if offers the chance to send a message that we all oppose violence against women.

“The vast majority of Kiwi men are decent blokes, loving dads, and caring partners. But there is no escaping grim statistics that show most violence by men against women takes place in the home - with an average of 14 women a year killed by their partners or ex-partners.

“I hope this campaign encourages men tochallenge each other on violent attitudes and behaviour.

“Each year there are over 3,500 convictions recorded against men for assaults on women.

“Half of all murders in New Zealand are due to family violence. Police deal with more than 70,000 family violence calls a year, but estimate only 18% of incidents are reported.

“Turning this around will take a change in attitudes, and events like White Ribbon Day can only help raise awareness.”

White Ribbon Day was started by a men's movement in Canada in 1991 and has been officially adopted by the United Nations as its International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.

The campaign was introduced to New Zealand by UNIFEM (the United Nations Development Fund for Women).

ENDS

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