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Email A Day Marks Internatl Anti-Violence Campaign

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


Email A Day Marks International Anti-Violence Campaign

A women's group is challenging government ministers to prioritise action on violence against women.

The newly formed Roundtable on Violence Against Women, is leading a campaign that involves emails being sent to 16 key policy makers over 16 days.

The campaign is part of the internationally observed 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence. The 16 Days runs from 25 November, International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women until 10 December, Human Rights Day.

'The 16 days make it explicit that violence against women is a human rights issue. Given the high levels of violence against women in New Zealand, we believe that the new government has a responsibility to take urgent action on the issue,' said Roundtable spokesperson, Alana Bowman.

Around 30 women and girls die as a result of assault every year.

New Zealand Police estimate an average of 14 women are murdered in domestic violence incidents every year.

In 2004, the New Zealand Medical Journal reported 33-39% of women experience violence from their intimate partners, 19-23% experience extreme physical violence from a partner, and 9-12% of women experience sexual violence (including rape) from a non-partner.

'Our emails will highlight that for effective change to happen, all aspects of violence against women need to be addressed together, from domestic violence, to rape, to stalking, and sexual harassment. In addition there needs to be a real commitment by policy makers to recognise that the overwhelming problem of violence in this country involves male perpetrators and female victims,' said Ms Bowman.

'One of the real problems in New Zealand is the fragmented and gender-neutral approach taken by many policy makers to violence against women issues. We have started the Roundtable on Violence Against Women to challenge this approach,' she said.


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ABOUT THE ROUNDTABLE ON VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN

The Roundtable on Violence Against Women is a newly formed group that focuses on women's human rights to live free from violence in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Currently being established as a charitable trust, the group aims to increase public and government awareness of the links between all forms of male violence against women, such as domestic violence, sexual assault, harassment, stalking, random violence, and serial gender-based killings.

The Roundtable on Violence Against Women is not a direct service agency. We will:

a.. Provide access to sound research and resource information on violence against women (via our website)

b.. Undertake campaigns and community education projects

c.. Work with the media to highlight violence against women issues

d.. Support NGOs that have a focus on violence against women

e.. Provide advice on policy and legislation issues related to violence against women

f.. Provide opportunities to network and share information.

For more information see www.roundtablevaw.org.nz


ENDS

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