The Government is opening the doors for victims of family or sexual violence to have their voices heard, with a view of using their stories to help drive a formal strategy to end such violence.
In South Auckland today, Marama Davidson announced the launch of a national engagement process around the elimination of family and sexual violence. This would be used as the foundations of a national strategy and action plan.
At the Ngā Whare Marae this morning, the Minister of Family and Sexual Violence said there is no place for family or sexual violence in our society.
“We have been talking for decades about what we can and must do as a nation and as a people to end sexual and family violence.”
But she said, for change to finally happen, it was important to put those families who are most affected at the centre of this change.
“We know as a Government we need to change the way we have worked with communities to address violence,” she said.
“The way we have been working has not worked, and in some ways has worked to further intergenerational harm.”
She said she hopes the launch today and the subsequent conversations would be the start of a new and more effective strategy.
“It is the start of a pathway, which will create a concrete vision and national strategy on eliminating sexual and family violence.”
The minister said such change is important given the data that shows one in three wahine Māori are survivors of family and/or sexual violence
“Te Ao Māori thinking and inclusive Te Tiriti framework – plays a pivotal part in transforming the system and is right at the forefront.”
Davidson called on all people, victims and perpetrators of violence alike, to engage in conversation and share their perspectives around what is needed.
“We want to hear from the victims and survivors...those who have lived through the hurt, the pain and the harm,” she said. “We also need to hear from those who use violence and have stopped violence and to know there is a way to stop, heal and restore.”
The engagement will officially begin next Wednesday and run until the end of June.
It includes closed-invitation, community-led hui, anonymous online survey engagement, email and free-post submissions (in writing, by voice or video). All online and email channels will be safe, secure and confidential.