Weekly Media Roundup

September 14, 2018 at 2:06 PM

Changes to family violence law strengthens protection of victims

Proposed changes to strengthen the system that deals with violence in families have been announced, with victims to be protected for up to 10 days and dowry abuse acknowledged as a form of violence.   

Justice Minister Andrew Little said the changes to the proposed Family and Whānau Violence law aims to strengthen the legislative foundations of the family violence system.

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Study reveals link between domestic violence and suicide attempts

A study released today shows a strong link between domestic abuse and self-harm.

It was conducted by Women's Refuge, with the aim of increasing knowledge of women's experiences of being both suicidal and a victim of intimate partner violence.

It also sought to identify better ways of responding to those women.

More than 1200 women responded to the survey, and their experiences at their partners' hands covered sexual, physical and emotional abuse.

All study respondents had considered or attempted suicide, with feeling worthless consistently reported as the most common factor driving that.

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Victims of partner violence see death as an escape: report

Horrific accounts of savage physical and psychological abuse have shocked Women's Refuge, who say intimate partner violence is driving victims to suicide and self-harm.

The stories of more than 1250 women were shared in an online survey conducted by Women's Refuge. The findings are revealed in a report released on Monday.

The catalogue of brutal incidents painted a picture of pain and desperation. Almost half of those who responded to the month-long survey said they had attempted suicide at least once and all had considered taking their own life.

The report was aimed at women and minority genders and explored the relationship between women's experiences of intimate partner violence and their self-harm, suicidal thoughts, and suicide attempts.

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Battered women tell how abuse led them to thoughts of suicide

The abuse came in different forms – physical, sexual, mental.

The suffering for many of the women who shared their horrific stories in a report released today became so acute that taking their own life seemed preferable to the daily abuse meted out by their partners.

The desperation of these women is captured in research from an online survey by Women's Refuge looking at the relationship between women's experiences of intimate partner violence and their self-harm, suicidal thoughts, and suicide events.

It paints a grim picture of the realities many victims face.

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Time to Acknowledge Family Violence as a Health Issue

Press Release: Aviva

Aviva welcomes the findings of a report released today by Women’s Refuge that emphatically demonstrates, in the words of women themselves, the significance of family violence as a mental and physical health issue in New Zealand, and calls for the Ministry of Health to acknowledge it as such.

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Tu Pono: Whānau Ora Campaign Comes to Waikawa Marae

Tū Pono ki Te Tau Ihu community project team has called a hui at Waikawa Marae on 26 September at 3.30pm to support local whānau to eliminate violence.

Commencing in 2016 at Te Hora Marae in Canvastown, this builds on a series of five hui held across Te Tau Ihu; and 22 hui across the South Island. Other hui in the top of the South have been held at Te Awhina marae in Motueka, Whakatu Marae in Nelson and Omaka Pa in Blenheim.

A feature of these hui has been presentations by Ta Mark Solomon former Kaiwhakahaere of Ngai Tahu and Dame Hon Tariana Turia former Minister for Whānau Ora.

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Why are we rejoicing in the punishment of children?

Child shaming and rejoicing in the punishment of children is horrible, and it’s part of a wider trend of the hatred of children becoming acceptable. Emily Writes asks what we can do to turn this shit around.

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Sex ed in schools failing many: ERO report

Nearly 30 per cent of schools are failing in their delivery of sexuality education, according to a new report by the Education Review Office. The report, based on visits to 116 schools around the country, finds that Maori, Pasifika, sex, gender or sexually diverse students, those with additional learning needs and students with strong cultural or religious beliefs are particularly disadvantaged.

Listen to RNZ's Kathryn Ryan's interview with Dr Deirdre Shaw, ERO's Group Manager Evaluation Services


Sexual violence and non-consensual sex rising due to porn, finds survey

Rape culture and sexual violence may be gaining ground in New Zealand because of pornography, a new survey has found.

The survey of 622 sexual health services, youth workers, schools and families has found increasing genital injuries caused by violent sex inspired by pornography that depicts violence as normal.

Respondents report "increased degradation, objectification and disrespect of women and girls; normalising of sexual violence and coercion; a disregard for consent; a devaluing and transactional approach to sex; advanced sexual knowledge for development age; an erosion of mutual pleasure and the normalising of painful sex particularly for women and gay males."

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NZ sex ed was bad in 2007 - it's still just as bad, report shows

Sex education in New Zealand is no better than it was a decade ago - and students are being let down by a lack of education around consent, pornography and sexual violence, a new report shows.

In 2007, the Education Review Office (ERO) found the majority of schools were not effectively meeting students' needs with sex education.

Māori and Pacific students were being particularly let down, as were students with additional needs and students who were sex-, gender- or sexuality-diverse.

A decade later, it's the same story.

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What parents really need to know about the ERO sex education report

The Education Review Office has released a new report on sexuality education in New Zealand schools. It’s important that parents read beyond the more sensational media headlines, writes Family Planning national health promotion advisor Amanda Hargreaves.

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'He's way off': Haka expert slams Brash's comments that it glorifies domestic violence

Haka can have a whole lot of different meanings - but to say it glorifies domestic violence is "way off", a haka expert says.

Te Wehi Haka director and haka expert Tapeta Wehi has slammed comments Don Brash made at the weekend that the haka was not a good representation of who New Zealanders are.

"Because it is basically a war dance, and violence, particularly domestic violence, is one of our major headaches in New Zealand. The haka to me seems to glorify it and that often worries me," told RadioLive listeners.

"I think the haka is a war dance. It implies we're going to slaughter our opponents on the rugby field. We often draw our finger across our throat to emphasise the point. I think it's overdone."

But Wehi disagreed with the former National leader. "He's way off."

The haka was about identity and who Māori are and where they came from, he said.

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Beauty clinic to offer leave for employees who are victims of family violence

A business in Cambridge is taking a bold step to help combat family violence in New Zealand.

The Caci beauty therapy clinic has announced it will be the first franchise in the country to offer 10 days paid leave to its employees who are victims of family violence.

New Zealand has the highest rate of reported family violence in the developed world, with one in three women experiencing it.

Owner of the Cambridge business, Kym Joll, said the change recognised the prevalence of family violence.

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Who is winning the war on synthetics?

A mandatory review of the Psychoactive Substances Act is more than a month overdue, while as many as 45 people have died since the middle of last year after using synthetic cannabis. Laura Walters looks at the state of the war on synthetics.

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'Little boy' cried himself to sleep after alleged sexual assault, court hears

A man has described crying himself to sleep as a 12-year-old after being allegedly sexually assaulted by a rugby coach.

Alosio Taimo, a long-time school volunteer and coach, is facing 83 charges of indecent assault or sexual violation against 18 complainants, some dating back to the 1980s. 

The 55-year-old pleaded not guilty to all charges at the start of a trial at the High Court in Auckland in August.

A complainant, who is now 41, gave evidence at the court on Wednesday, saying Taimo sexually assaulted him when he was 12 years old. 

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Auckland couple flew underage teen into city to work as prostitute

Police were alerted to a couple pimping out a 15-year-old after the girl's mum discovered on social media she'd been flown from Christchurch to work in central Auckland brothels.

Taton Sebastian Smith, 35, and Tahleicia Elizabeth Seil, 25, were sentenced last Friday in the Auckland District Court by Judge Eddie Paul for assisting someone under 18 to provide sexual services.

Smith was jailed for two years and 10 months, while Seil will serve nine months' home detention after they had earlier pleaded guilty.

Both also were also sentenced for profiting from the activity, and Smith for having sex with a person aged 12 to 16.

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'Veil of silence' on Samoa's domestic violence

A commission of inquiry in Samoa has recommended the government set up a special office to combat domestic violence.

The commission has criticised the government and the church for not doing enough so far.

The setting up of a Family Violence Prevention Office is the lead recommendation, out of 39, made in a report released by the commission today.

The report found that nine out of ten people experience violence in the home in Samoa.

Six out of ten women experience intimate partner violence and one in five are raped.

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Samoa PM urges action over family violence

The Samoan Prime Minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi says everyone is complicit in Samoa's high rate of family violence.

The time for talking was over and action was needed said Tuilaepa as he launched a report following a national public inquiry into the matter.

The Report of the National Public Inquiry into Family Violence said there was a 'veil of silence' over domestic violence in the country and it pointed at the government, the church and village institutions saying they were among those shouldering the blame.

It was time to address the issue head on said the Prime Minister and for those in power to stand up and be counted.

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'I've got people batting for me': Life-long Kiwi criminal on what's keeping him out of jail

Shannon Watene has 'notorious' written all over his face.

That's not just a turn of phrase; he actually has the word 'notorious' tattooed on his face, alongside the number 13.

But with the help of a social worker who has a similar background, he's taken a few small steps towards turning his life around.

Mr Watene has been in and out of court and prison since he was a teenager, but since going through the family violence court - where there's extra support available - he's coping much better.

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Immigration marriage and dowry scams on the rise, says charity

A special needs 18-year-old Kiwi woman with the mental age of 7 is targeted by a much older Indian national for marriage in order to get permanent residence.

An Indian woman who paid thousands of dollars in dowry to marry a Kiwi Indian is now in a safe house after the husband absconded with all her belongings.

Hundreds of South Asian men are entering into sham marriages for NZ residency and then using their status to extort dowry from women in their home countries, Auckland group Bhartiya Samaj Charitable Trust says.

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Cory Jefferies gets at least 11 years for Kim Richmond's murder

Cory Jefferies will spend at least 11 years in jail for the murder of his partner of 26 years, Kim Richmond.

The 46-year-old was today sentenced in the High Court at Hamilton to life imprisonment with a minimum non-parole period of 11 years for the murder in July 2016.

Jefferies denied intentionally killing Richmond with his lawyer Tom Sutcliffe telling a jury in the High Court at Hamilton in July that it was an "unscripted event" that saw him panic.

But they didn't believe him, finding him guilty of murder after six and a-half-hours' deliberations.

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Woman whacked partner with piece of wood 10 times during fight over cigarettes

A woman who struck her female partner with a piece of wood during a fight over cigarettes has been commended for the efforts she has made to turn her life around.

About 7.30am on April 24, Anetta Ormsby got into a heated argument with her girlfriend which soon spiralled into violence.

An enraged Ormsby picked up a piece of wood and hit the victim 10 times around her neck, back and legs, leaving the woman with several welts and a small cut to her forehead.  The victim refused any medical treatment.

Since pleading guilty to a charge of injures with intent to injure, the New Plymouth District Court heard on Tuesday how much Ormsby had done to try and right the wrongs.

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Trial of social worker accused of having sex with teen in her care ends in mistrial

The trial of a trainee Oranga Tamariki social worker accused of sexually violating a 14-year-old boy in her care has ended abruptly in a mistrial.

Hastings woman Amanda Tatam, 30, had been on trial in Napier District Court facing five charges of sexual conduct with a boy aged under 16, threatening to cause grievous bodily harm to the boy and his father, and a representative charge of supplying cannabis.

The trial, which began on Monday, ended after lunch on Tuesday with Judge Tony Adeane telling jurors that legal and technical matters had come to the court's attention over the lunch break that meant he had to declare it a mistrial.

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Four years' imprisonment for kidnapping of estranged wife

A Timaru woman kidnapped by her estranged husband and subjected to mental torture during a 24 hour long ordeal has told the court the incident has had a lasting impact on her, she constantly feels "unsafe" and "on guard".

Reading her victim impact statement in the Timaru High Court before her estranged husband was jailed for four years, Nicole Brown said she had been tortured, humiliated and degraded during the incident in November 2016.

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Wairarapa man pleads guilty to abuse of four, including a foster child

Four boys, one on a Social Welfare foster placement, were abused and coerced into sexual activity with a Wairarapa man throughout the 1970s.

Vaughan Gene Loader, now 71, pleaded guilty in Wellington District Court on Friday only days before the start of his trial for historical sexual offending to nine charges.

A summary of facts before the court said one boy placed in his foster care was repeatedly touched, usually while Loader's wife was absent or while in the car with him. On one occasion the victim was also given beer until he was ill.

He eventually ran away.

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Category: News Media