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Kiwis Are Stepping Up To Prevent Family Violence

Media Release October 4, 2011

Statistics Show Kiwis Are Stepping Up To Prevent Family Violence

Family Works Northern is thrilled that the reported number of Family Violence offences in New Zealand is decreasing.

Police and Statistics New Zealand have just announced that Family Violence offences have dropped from 54,104 in 2009/10 to 52,408 in 2010/11, an overall decrease of 3.1 per cent nationally. The number of Family Violence-related murders also fell, dropping from 35 in 2009/10 to 20 in 2010/11.

Superintendent George Fraser from the Auckland City District where Family Violence offences fell by 10.2 per cent says "We have had great support from our partner agencies who share our determination to reduce the harm caused to those living in violent or abusive relationships. A number of these programmes target those at the highest risk and provide interventions, including the attendance at Court ordered programmes. Supporting those most vulnerable will remain a priority."

Family Works Northern has close ties with the Police and Ministry of Justice to provide Family Violence prevention in communities from Taupo northward.

“These new statistics are great to see and show that Kiwis are refusing to accept Family Violence as normal,” says Laurie Pedlar, GM for Family Works Northern. “We can definitely build on this trend by continuing to work closely with our clients and agencies like the Police, CYF and the Family Court.”

Family Works Northern employs a specialist Family Violence Prevention advocate, Jude Halberg, whose personal experience with Family Violence is now an integral part of the national “It’s Not Ok” campaign. Family Works Northern is also working directly with the Police through advocate Helen Heta and the Family Safety Team (Pictured) in the Waikato region where victims of domestic violence are the focus.

In Whangarei, Hamilton, Huntly, Tokoroa, Tauranga, Whakatane, Rotorua, Taupo and Turangi, Family Works Northern provides support for women in abusive relationships, past or present, through Women Against Violence (WAVE) groups. It also provides a unique programme for children who have been exposed to violent domestic relationships called Restore and manages 27 Government-funded social workers who work with students in 54 schools throughout the northern region.

“We don’t see every instance where violence occurs in the home but we certainly see a lot of people where violence is a frequent part of family life,” says Ms. Pedlar. “That is one of the reasons why we have established a new partnership with Shine, an agency who deal specifically with domestic abuse, and why we will continue to run the Guardian Angel campaign aimed at preventing child abuse. We simply want to reach as many families and individuals as possible.”

For more information about the Guardian Angel campaign against violence in the home visit http://www.angel.org.nz/

For more about the latest crime statistics visit http://www.police.govt.nz/service/statistics


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