by Jan Logie
According to the Minister of Women’s Affairs media release today “The Ministry of Women’s Affairs is investigating how we can prevent revictimisation, better understand the impacts on victims, and better support these girls and women”.
Three years on from a major review which involved all relevant government departments and leaders in the field we need action not more investigation.
So in honour of Rape Awareness Week, May1-7, I would like to offer 7 suggestions to the Government primarily sourced from the 2009 Taskforce for Action on Sexual Violence:
1) Regularly and publically report on your progress towards implementing the recommendations of the 2009 Taskforce for Action on Sexual Violence (TASV).
2) Immediately increase funding to specialist sexual abuse services.
3) Redo the stocktake of government spending on specialist sexual abuse services so that it is understandable i.e isn’t so broad as to include benefit payments that might be being received by perpetrators and victims/survivors. The Minister of Social development promised a review of specialist services but her department delivered a P.R exercise.
4) Commit to introduce legislation in line with the Law Commission’s recommendations relating to pre-trial and trial processes.
5) In partnership with TOAH-NNEST, the umbrella organisation of specialist services, develop an implementation plan to ensure high quality crisis services are available throughout the country.
6) Increase the availability, and enhance the capacity of Tangata Whenua and Tauiwi providers including specialist services for Pasifika, Asian, all ages and all genders.
7) With TOAH-NNEST, evaluate and address the adequacy of funding for the provision of community treatment for offenders as well as early intervention and prevention services.