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Better support needed for perpetrators of Family Violence

Better support and services needed for perpetrators of Family Violence.

MEDIA RELEASE 25th November

Women’s Refuge welcomes the findings of the Issues Paper, Responding to perpetrators of family violence. The paper published today by the New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse calls for improved responses to perpetrators of family violence.

“If we’re to be serious about addressing the atrocious rates of violence, we need to making sure there are comprehensive services that respond to the cause of family violence; the perpetrators,” says Chief Executive of Women’s Refuge Dr Ang Jury.

“Currently services for perpetrators of violence are disjointed and vary in their availability from region to region. Similar to the comprehensive wraparound services offered to victims of domestic violence, we need to be offering the same to perpetrators, and be adequately funding them but this cannot happen at the expense of the services for their victims”

With family violence reoffending rates among some of the highest in the developed world, the paper underlines the failure of the criminal justice system to effectively deter reoffending, noting that punitive sentences are largely ineffective and that most perpetrators never attend a stopping violence programme.

The issues paper highlights the need for consistency, rather than the current model of ad hoc funding from various government departments. However Dr Jury believes that integrated service systems are only effective if they are truly collaborative and sufficiently resourced, adding that the best way to ensure positive outcomes is to invest in quality programmes and in the competence of the people delivering them.

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“Often clients engage in many different services, having to tell their stories to a range of practitioners, or having to go to a range of different service providers to meet their needs. We need to continue moves towards a cohesive and coherent overarching structure for all family violence work and services, with adequate resourcing to manage their everyday frontline work – along with sufficient resourcing for organisations to collect and evaluate data, train staff, and implement best practice approaches.”

The paper is available from


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