Auditor-General to look at Family Violence and Sexual Violence Joint Venture
Wed 05 Aug 2020
The Office of the Auditor-General (OAG) has announced it will look at how effectively the government's Joint Venture has been set up to support reductions in family violence and sexual violence.
The Auditor-General's website states that the audit will consider three questions:
- "Are the role, mandate, objectives, and accountabilities of the joint venture understood and communicated to those working on reducing family violence and sexual violence?
- How does the joint venture intend to support better outcomes and significantly reduce family violence and sexual violence?
- Does the joint venture have what it needs to support the delivery of improved outcomes?"
"Our work will provide independent assurance to parliament and New Zealanders that the joint venture has been set up in a way that ensures that it can support significant reductions in family violence and sexual violence. We will:
- provide our views on the joint venture – a new approach by the Government in addressing family violence and sexual violence, which are long-standing and challenging issues, and
- look to determine the conditions necessary for this and any future joint ventures to be successful in delivering improved outcomes for New Zealanders."
If people working for NGOs and/or in the community would like to share your experience or working with government, including the Joint Venture, you can use the feedback form on the OAG website to get in touch in the first instance.
The work is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2021.
The Joint Venture - Eliminating family violence and sexual violence was launched in September 2018 to provide a single point of accountability and leadership across government. See more about the aims of the Joint Venture in the Beehive release and Q&A document from when the Joint Venture was launched.
Parliament passed the Public Service Legislation Bill on 22 July 2020. The legislation repeals and replaces the State Sector Act 1988. It includes changes that allow the Public Service to organise differently, including the ability to set up joint ventures. State Services Minister Chris Hipkins stated:
“Under the changes, boards – made up of a number of chief executives from relevant government agencies – could be established to tackle the most pressing cross-portfolio issues. These boards, or joint ventures, would be accountable to a single Minister and receive direct budget appropriations."
Chief Human Rights Commissioner Paul Hunt has commented on the new legislation, expressing concern that the legislation references the human rights of public officials themselves, but does not explicitly require officials to take into account the human rights of all New Zealanders when exercising their public duties.
Find more information about the Public Service Reforms from the State Services Commission.