NZ Government commits to action to end violence against women and girls

A record 6000 NGO and government delegates are attending the 57th UN Commission on the Status of Women meeting in New York. Webcasts are available here.

Women's Affairs Minister Jo Goodhew announced New Zealand's pledge under the UN Women initiative, COMMIT, to take steps to ensure women and girls are able to lead violence-free lives. 50 governments have committed to taking action.

NGOs attending from Aotearoa NZ include Women's Refuge, Te Ohaaki A Hine - National Network Ending Sexual Violence Together (TOAH-NNEST) and through Pacific Women's Watch, The Project and Shakti.

TOAH-NNEST Tauiwi caucus Chair Dr Kim McGregor said "I am hopeful that because the New Zealand government has made the promise to take action to end violence against women and girls, it will follow through with meaningful action including ensuring there are adequate resources for sexual violence support services many of which are currently struggling to provide vital specialist services to their communities".

Betty Sio, CEO of the Pacific Islands Prevention and Safety Project is presenting a workshop on Pacific models of practice to address violence against women. She said, “The solutions already exist in fa’asamoa (Samoan way of life). The sacred covenant (feagaiga) between brother and sister and similarly between men and women is a cultural precedent that can redress the imbalance evident in relationships today."

Read the Agreed Conclusions from the 57th session of the Commission on the Status of Women.

Read the report and papers from the the preceding international experts meeting on primary prevention, September 2012.

Media:

'NZ at UN forum on ending violence against women', Voxy, 7/3/13

'NZ joins UN initiative to end violence against women', NZ Herald, 6/3/13

'Samoan leader takes fight to eliminate violence against women to the UN', sPASIFIKmag.com, Jan/Feb 2013

Photo credit: iStock