Family and sexual violence challenged

About half of all homicides in New Zealand are committed by an offender who is identified as family.

Today Prevention of Family Violence and Sexual Violence Minister Marama Davidson and Māori Development Minister Willie Jackson launched the Family Violence and Sexual Violence Joint Venture National Strategy Community Engagement at South Auckland's Ngā Whare Wātea marae.

Davidson was clear about the engagement process opening up a safe and trusted space for all voices of the community, particularly those with lived experience to be listened to and learnt from before the creation of the National Strategy and Action Plans.

"For far too long government agencies have been fragmented, and isolated in the way that they work,and  have not been sharing information properly to better inform the solutions."

Some 76% of family violence incidents are not reported to police, and wāhine Māori are still disproportionately represented according to the data, she says. More than one in three are survivors of family and/or sexual violence.

“It is essential given the evidence, that the Māori leadership, Te Ao Māori thinking and inclusive Te Tiriti framework plays a pivotal part in transforming the system and is right at the forefront.”

The minister particularly acknowledged Interim Te Rōpū who produced the Te Hau Tangata resource in the engagement invitation pack, the current leadership in the communities, and the widely respected research that has a whakapapa spanning decades.

"Te Hau Tangata is a national strategy from a Triti perspective, and was pulled together by Interim Te Rōpū Interim Te Rōpū was a tangata whenua group that was mandated by the government last term."

"What we are also doing today is starting our nationwide conversation about what people need to see in the final strategy that we create together. What are the priorities that government should focus on? What are the solutions and the ideas and the stories that are coming from across our communities?"