Family Violence

The Herald editorial:

Let us not soften the language we use about a man who hits a woman. It has been called or partner violence. Our in-depth examination of the problem today and through next week is labelled “family violence” because an entire family suffers when a parent resorts to violence to control a partner or children. But at its most serious level, this problem is men. Not all men, not even most men, and, as some men always point out, not just men. Women can, and do, resort to violence too.

But this subject is too important to be blurred and broadened for the sake of gender neutrality. New Zealand has one of the worst family violence rates in the world and it is a fair bet women are not responsible for most of it, and certainly not the worst of it.

Why guess? we have a very robust and reliable survey of crime in New Zealand.

The 2014 NZ Crime and Safety Survey found:

  • 6% of women and 4% of men were victims of a violent interpersonal offence in 2013
  • 26% of women and 14% of men were victims of partner violence at some stage in their life

So yes most domestic violence is by men (and certainly the worst domestic violence is), but in the latest year 40% of victims were men which is a very significant minority. A 60/40 split is very different to say a 90/10 split.

We should not listen to claims of provocation, verbal or physical. If we are going to eradicate this disgrace on our society the truth needs to be implanted in every male mind that there is never an excuse for a man to hit a woman.

I agree. I abhor such violence.


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