INDEPENDENT NEWS

Ethnic Women Urge Communities to March Against NZ's Shame

Published: Wed 10 Sep 2014 03:13 PM
Ethnic Women Urge Communities to March Against NZ's Shame
On Monday 15th September, hundreds including ethnic women from across New Zealand will march and participate in a united call to action to address domestic violence in Wellington.
Shakti Community Council is a national not-for-profit community organisation. Established since 1995, it caters to the specific needs of immigrant women and their children, domestic violence victims from Asian, African and Middle Eastern communities.
Shakti is an affiliate member of the National Collective of Independent Women’s Refuges.
Members from Auckland, Bay of Plenty, Christchurch, Dunedin will join their Wellington group and participate in the nationwide rally “March to Change New Zealand’s Shame”, organised by Women’s Refuge and several NGOs including Shakti, to direct Government and public attention to the shameful state of domestic violence in New Zealand.
The facts & figures
In New Zealand, 1 in 3 women experience abuse from their partners in their life time. More than half of murders are domestic violence related.
Last year, 4 ethnic women who were victims of domestic violence were killed in their own homes by family members. Two of whom were residents of Wellington, where currently there is no funding or resourcing avail to culturally specialist services to meet the needs of vulnerable ethnic women and children trapped in domestic violence.
Shakti specialises in highly complex cases of immigrant women victims experiencing various forms of culturally-sanctioned abuse through practices such as forced marriage, underage marriage, honour-based violence and dowry-related violence that exist within Asian, African and Middle Eastern families and communities in New Zealand.
Shakti has been pushing for legislation change to increase the protections for vulnerable young women and girl victims of forced marriage and migrant women in dowry-related abuse since 2009.
They have also lobbied with the Government to meet the demand of ethnic women victims needing a culturally-appropriate refuge in the capital city. To this date, no Government funding has been allocated for their services in Wellington.
Shakti Wellington will continue to demand action, better systems, resources and laws to improve the safety, well-being needs of immigrant women, as part of the national movement to end gender based violence in Aotearoa New Zealand.
ends

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