Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


One in One Hundred Sexual Assaults Result in a Conviction

Media release from Rape Crisis Auckland

One in One Hundred Sexual Assaults Result in a Conviction

“One in a Hundred: Improving justice for sexual violence survivors”

Louise Nicholas, National Sexual Violence Survivor Advocate at Rape Prevention Education is a key speaker at this years’ Cartwright Anniversary Seminar “One in a Hundred: Improving justice for sexual violence survivors”.

The title of the seminar comes from research suggesting that only about 7 out of 100 incidents of sexual violence are reported to police. Of those 7, only 3 cases are likely to get to court, and only about 1 is likely to result in a conviction.

There are a range of reasons why rape survivors do not report the crimes committed against them. Many survivors believe the inaccurate but widely held victim-blaming attitude that they were responsible for the sexual assault.

Of the 3 out of 100 cases of sexual violence that get to court, Louise Nicholas says “Defence lawyers then play on victim-blaming attitudes to slam survivors of sexual violence around the court like tennis balls”.

“It is not the defendant who is on trial; it is the rape survivor who is on trial” Nicholas says.

At the ‘One in a Hundred’ seminar ex-Commissioner Warren Young will be speak to the 2012 Law Commission recommended reforms to improve the fairness, effectiveness and efficiency of the trial process, with particular regard to sexual offences.

These recommended reforms include replacing the jury with a decision-making panel that includes one judge and two trained jurors, ensuring that judges and counsel are trained in the particular dynamics and challenges associated with trying crimes of sexual violence, and offering alternative routes for resolution. In particular, Project Restore will also be profiled at the seminar. This is a collaborative project which provides a specialist restorative justice response for those impacted by sexual violence. HELP and Rape Prevention Education continue to be key supporters of this project.

Dr Kim McGregor says “If we are to make our communities safer from sex offenders, especially for our children, youth, and women, then the Government must ensure the Law Commission recommendations are given full and urgent consideration”.

“The current adversarial system is inhumane especially for survivors of sexual assault. Why on earth would survivors of sexual violence want to enter the current criminal justice system that blames and re-brutalises them? ” McGregor says.

McGregor is concerned that “If sexual crimes are not reported, and those who commit sexually harmful behaviour do not get sanctions and the specialist treatment they need, then our communities will continue to be unsafe especially for our children, youth, and women”.

The government’s action plan for the Reducing Crime and Re-offending targets of the Better Public Services initiative includes providing support for repeat victims, and specialist support for victims of particularly traumatic crime such as, sexual violence.

According to research from the Ministry of Women’s Affairs, at least 50% of girls and women who are sexually assaulted are likely to be sexually re-victimised and survivors of childhood sexual abuse are twice as likely as non-victims to be sexually assaulted later in life.

The panel of high profile speakers at the Cartwright Seminar includes Louise Nicholas of Rape Prevention Education, Victoria University Associate Professor of Law, Elisabeth McDonald, and Ex-Commissioner Warren Young. The panel will explore some of the barriers to justice for survivors of sexual violence in New Zealand with a focus on court processes, and what can be done about it.

The seminar ‘One in a hundred: Improving justice for sexual violence survivors’ has been organised by Women’s Health Action in partnership with Counselling Services Centre, HELP, Rape Prevention Education and Tu Wahine Trust.

The seminar will be held at Parnell Trust Jubilee Building from 1-3 pm on Tuesday 13th August, 2013, followed by afternoon tea. Registration costs $10 and can be obtained from Women’s Health Action www.womens-health.org.nz or (09) 520 5295.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Populism’s Changing Of The Guard, Plus A Soul Music Playlist

The weekend’s Newshub/Reid Research poll results - Act up to 11.1%, National up 1% but still sitting at only 28.7%, Labour down to 43%, the Greens up to 8.5% - shows that the combined centre right vote is still languishing nearly 12 points behind the combined centre-left vote, 45 months after the last centre-right government was voted out... More>>


Finance: Finance Minister And RBNZ Governor Agree To Update MOU On Macro-prudential Policy

Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Reserve Bank Governor Adrian Orr have updated the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on macro-prudential policy to further protect the financial system and support the Government’s housing objectives... More>>

Government: Offers Formal Apology For Dawn Raids
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has today formally apologised to Pacific communities impacted by the Dawn Raids in the 1970s.

Between 1974 and 1976, a series of rigorous immigration policies were carried out that resulted in targeted raids on the homes of Pacific families... More>>

Government: Bill Introduced To Protect Against Conversion Practices

Legislation has been introduced to Parliament to protect against practices intended to change or suppress someone’s sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression... More>>


Human Rights Commission: Successive Governments Responsible For Massive Breaches Of The Right To A Decent Home

Te Kahu Tika Tangata / Human Rights Commission has today launched Framework Guidelines on the Right to a Decent Home in Aotearoa and announced that it will hold a national inquiry into housing... More>>

NZUS Council: Welcomes Nomination Of Senator Tom Udall As US Ambassador To NZ

The NZUS Council welcomes the nomination of Senator Tom Udall to the role of US Ambassador to New Zealand and Samoa, NZUS Council executive director Jordan Small said... More>>

BusinessNZ: Visa Extensions Welcomed
BusinessNZ has welcomed the extension of some critical skill visa durations and changes to immigration systems to speed processing. Chief Executive Kirk Hope says move acknowledges advocacy by the hospitality sector, the BusinessNZ Network and others, and comes not a moment too soon.... More>>




InfoPages News Channels