EthnicYouthEducationCoordinationMaoriCounsellingCrisisDisabilityLegalElderChildrenMenParentingWomenSexual ViolenceFamily




MSD: Sexual Harm Service Development Update

March 02, 2018 at 8:48 AM

Ministry of Social Development

27 February 2018

Sexual Violence Service Development Update

Kia ora koutou

In this update you'll find information about:

Safe to talk helpline starts in Canterbury

A new 24/7 sexual harm information and support helpline called Safe to talk He pai ki te kōrerobegan operating in Canterbury on 19 February.

The helpline is available to anyone affected by sexual harm in any way.

Safe to talk is staffed by a team of specialists who can provide advice, support and guidance to people affected by sexual harm. Friends and whānau can use the service too.

Safe to talk is available for free 24 hours a day, seven days a week by:

Launching Safe to talk in Canterbury allows time to establish the helpline before it goes live nationally in April 2018. Safe to talk has been set up as part of the Government's commitment to better support people affected by sexual harm and to prevent sexual harm by ensuring more people get the help they need at the right time.

Early results

In the first 36 hours of the service going live, the website was presented (via Google ad) 184 times due to keyword searches such as sexual abuse, rape, raped, sexual harm and safe to talk. The website was clicked through 11 times as a result of the ad presentation to searches.

Support was also offered to people who contacted the helpline – this included referral to frontline services in Christchurch.

Workshops for providers

Following the referral pathway workshop held in Christchurch in December, Homecare Medical, who are operating the helpline, will run further workshops for providers in March. These sessions will explore the referral process to face-to-face services, and will also look at the set-up process for the Healthpoint sexual harm services directory.

Workshops are planned for Auckland, Whangarei, Wellington and Waikato. Homecare Medical will send out invitations shortly.

Safe to talk website

The Safe to talk website has received great feedback from research participants with 73 percent saying the overall impression was ‘excellent' or ‘very good'. People liked the layout saying it was nice and neutral, friendly and easy to navigate. We also heard that the images promoted discreetness and the ability to use the helpline and remain anonymous.

Feedback from current providers noted a need for more kaupapa Māori service information. We are continuing to work with Te Ohaakii a Hine – National Network Ending Sexual Violence Together (TOAH-NNEST) to develop the website over the coming months. We look forward to increasing its capability and content before the national launch in April.

Open invitation

Homecare Medical has extended an open invitation to providers to visit their Auckland, Wellington or Christchurch centres to understand how the organisation carries out its role across a number of sectors.

If you have any questions or would like to meet with helpline staff or visit Homecare Medical, please contact:

Service providers invited to give feedback on service guidelines

When we introduced the new Sexual Harm Crisis Support Service Guidelines in July last year we made a commitment to review the guidelines regularly.

As the guidelines have now been in place for six months, we want to know what's working well, what's not so good, and what could change.

If you are a contracted provider of sexual harm crisis support services, you should have received an invitation from your local contract manager to provide written feedback on the guidelines. Please submit feedback by 9 March.

We are also offering the opportunity to provide feedback in person, via video conference or teleconference. If you have any questions relating to the feedback please contact us by emailing

Once we have collected all the feedback we will be in touch to share any themes, and recommended changes to the guidelines will be effective from 1 July 2018.

Evaluation of suppliers to close crisis support gaps

The opportunity to register interest in filling the gaps in sexual harm crisis support services in the Midlands and Southern regions has now closed.

A panel has reviewed the applications for the 12 areas (six in the Midlands region and six in the Southern region) that still have gaps in their crisis support services following an earlier tender process.

The next stage of evaluation is now underway and applicants will be contacted shortly to discuss the next steps.

Find out more about the ROI and read the questions and answers.

If you have any further questions, please email us at

ACC opens tender for sensitive claims contracts

ACC has opened a tender for the supply of Integrated Services for Sensitive Claims (ISSC).

ACC offers fully-funded, immediate support through ISSC if someone has experienced sexual violence. The service allows clients to access a range of services including therapy, assessment and support services such as social work and family/whanau sessions.

You can find details of the ISSC contract on

Since the service was launched in November 2014 it has been a closed contract. The tender process will provide an opportunity for new suppliers to help ensure clients are able to access support as soon as they need it.

If your organisation wishes to apply for the contract, you need to register on the Government Electronic Tender Service (GETS). Further information and application documents are available on GETS.

If you have any questions, please contact

Global Summit of Women being held soon

The Global Summit of Women being held in Sydney in April will explore practical strategies and best practices in improving women's economic status, whether they are corporate initiatives, public policies or NGO programmes.

Over 70 international organisations representing women from five continents are planning to attend the 2018 Summit from 26-28 April, along with women government Ministers and multilateral agency executives.

The theme of the summit – Women: Creating Economies of Shared Value – highlights the ability of women to develop a more inclusive economy as women advance their own businesses and careers.

It will also inform delegates on how to access the Australian and Asia-Pacific market, showcase women business and government leaders from the region, and provide skills-building sessions.

Registration for the summit closes on 26 March.

Find out more about the Global Summit

If you have any queries, please contact us at


Ministry of Social Development

Category: Newsletters