The Green Party has just received a copy of yet another bill which the new National Government is pushing through under urgency – the Domestic Violence (Enhancing Safety) Bill.
We don’t think most members of the public or interested organisations have had a chance to see it yet so here it is. We only got it this morning, and it’s due up in the House today or tomorrow.
At this stage we think it is likely that most – if not all – parties in Parliament, including the Greens, will support the bill.
The Green Party has non violence as one of our four founding charter principles, and believe that the Government must make an absolute commitment to reducing violence in society and in our homes.
The key feature of the new Domestic Violence Bill is that it introduces an ‘on the spot’ protection order which police can issue immediately, removing the alleged violent offender from the home for a period of up to 5 days. This gives victims a chance to work out what they can or should do next.
There are also some other changes in relation to the courts making protection orders on behalf of the victim at sentencing, requiring defendants to attend stopping violence programmes, and providing more protection for children when it comes bail conditions.
At this stage I doesn’t look very likely that anyone will have a chance to submit on the bill as part of the normal Select Committee process, but if people have concerns about the bill today I suggest you email MPs urgently with your views.