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Breaking The Silence On Domestic Violence








Breaking The Silence On Domestic Violence

Women’s Refuge says the stories of family violence published in a new book, provide both insight and hope.

It’s Time We Started Telling These Stories has been published by the “It’s Not OK” Campaign and tells the life stories of eight New Zealanders who grew up with family violence.

Women’s Refuge Chief Executive, Heather Henare says family violence persists in an environment of secrecy and shame.  “Anyone can find themselves in an abusive relationship and it takes a huge amount of courage to reach out and talk about what is happening.” 

“The very positive thing about this book is that stories are beginning to be told and as survivors of abuse find their voices, we grow as a community, as a society, in our understanding of the dynamics of family violence.”

“It is so evident, in reading these accounts, that the effects of violence last for a lifetime and across generations.  I commend the contributors for their bravery in breaking through the silence.  It is a good thing to have done.” 

She says this initiative is part of the “It’s Not OK” campaign against family violence.  “Women’s Refuge absolutely supports this campaign.  We are possibly working harder as a result of increased awareness, because people are responding and realising it’s OK to ask for help.  We have a very long way to go in this country, but it’s encouraging to see the beginning of change.”

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The book was launched this week at Wellington City Library at an event attended by the Minister for Social Development, Paula Bennett and Wellington Mayor, Kerry Prendergast.

Illustrations for the book were designed by Wellington tertiary students and form the basis for an exhibition that will tour other libraries next year.

It’s Time We Started Telling These Stories will be available to borrow in the New Year from public libraries throughout New Zealand.

Women’s Refuge is New Zealand’s most significant family violence organisation, with a 35 year history of providing comprehensive services for women and children


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