Social Development ministry gave historic abuse complaint statements to police

Deeply personal and traumatic accounts of historic abuse in state care were given to police without the knowledge of those concerned.

A judge has said the abuse claimants were “some of the most vulnerable people in New Zealand society” and distrusted state agencies.

She made an order to stop the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) passing on information, provided for court proceedings, without the claimant’s consent.

Published in Stuff

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New Zealand tells country’s sex abuse commission to include Church institutions

Just months after the Australian Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse issued its final report, New Zealand is beginning its own royal commission – and the nation’s Catholic bishops are asking its institutions not to be excluded from scrutiny.

A royal commission is the highest form of inquiry in most countries where Queen Elizabeth II is the head of state, including Australia and New Zealand.

Right now, the New Zealand royal commission will look into youth detention centers, psychiatric hospitals and orphanages, as well as any government care services contracted out to private institutions.

Published in the Crux.

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Calls for abuse inquiry to include faith-based

A Royal Commission on historic abuse in state care will “fail” survivors – including those still suffering in Otago – unless faith-based institutions are included, a campaigner says.

The call came from Liz Tonks, the head of a support network for survivors of abuse in faith-based institutions, as consultation on the draft terms of reference for the Royal Commission into Abuse in State Care entered its final week.

But Ms Tonks, who met Royal Commission chairman Sir Anand Satyanand yesterday to discuss her submission, said there was no sign of a “significant” change in the scope of the inquiry.

Published in the Otago Daily Times

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Research results support the need to consider men and women as both potential victims and perpetrators when approaching IPV

Published in the International Journal of Public Health here >>

Abstract

We aimed to assess intimate partner violence (IPV) among men and women from six cities in six European countries. Four IPV types were measured in a population-based multicentre study of adults (18-64 years; n = 3,496). Sex- and city-differences in past year prevalence were examined considering victims, perpetrators or both and considering violent acts’ severity and repetition. Male victimization of psychological aggression ranged from 48.8 % (Porto) to 71.8 % (Athens) and female victimization from 46.4 % (Budapest) to 70.5 % (Athens).

Male and female victimization of sexual coercion ranged from 5.4 and 8.9 %, respectively, in Budapest to 27.1 and 25.3 % in Stuttgart. Male and female victims of physical assault ranged from 9.7 and 8.5 %, respectively, in Porto, to 31.2 and 23.1 % in Athens. Male victims of injury were 2.7 % in Östersund and 6.3 % in London and female victims were 1.4 % in Östersund and 8.5 % in Stuttgart. IPV differed significantly across cities (p < 0.05).

Men and women predominantly experienced IPV as both victims and perpetrators with few significant sex-differences within cities. Results support the need to consider men and women as both potential victims and perpetrators when approaching IPV.

Intimate partner violence: a study in men and women from six European countries (PDF Download Available). Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/272518443_Intimate_partner_violence_a_study_in_men_and_women_from_six_European_countries [accessed Mar 06 2018].

Australian abuse survivors criticise NZ inquiry

From Radio NZ here >>

New Zealand’s plan to leave the Church and other non-state groups out of the Royal Commission of inquiry into abuse is getting some bad press in Australia today.

The Newcastle Herald has gone big with a story of Australian survivors of abuse afraid their New Zealand counterparts won’t get justice.

Joanne McCarthy, the journalist who did in Australia what the Boston Globe’s Spotlight team did in the US to break open the clerical sex abuse scandal, has interviewed them.

The approach being taken here was “completely unacceptable”, she said.

read more…

Australia: One in Three In-depth Analysis – responds to latest attack upon male victims by Daily Life

(This article originally appeared here >>)

On January 25th, Fairfax blog Daily Life published an article by Jane Gilmore titled Fact or fiction: Every third victim of intimate partner violence is a male. The article was the latest in a series of attacks upon male victims of domestic violence by the publication.

This is the One in Three Campaign’s in-depth response (a short version is here).

Men’s Rights Activists or advocates for male victims?

Ms Gilmore starts by referring to the One in Three Campaign as “A Men’s Rights Activist website,” in what appears to be an attempt to smear the name of the Campaign within certain circles where the term “MRA” is used pejoratively.

If you check the Internet Archive of our website you will find we have never used this term as we don’t identify as MRAs. As our front page states,

One in Three is a diverse group of male and female professionals – academics, researchers, social workers, psychologists, counsellors, lawyers, health promotion workers, trainers and survivor/advocates. The Campaign aims to raise public awareness of the existence and needs of male victims of family violence and abuse; to work with government and non-government services alike to provide assistance to everyone affected by family violence; and to reduce the incidence and impacts of family violence on Australian men, women and children.

Attacks upon ABS data

Gilmore goes on to claim that our presentation of verified data from such organisations as the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) and the Australian Institute of Criminology (AIC) is “straight up wrong,” “misinformation” and “baseless myths”.

The author analyses in detail the verified ABS statistic on our infographic that “the proportion of men experiencing current partner violence between 2005 and 2016, rose more than fivefold, a 552 per cent increase”.

read more…

The Press Editorial – Government’s proposed abuse inquiry doesn’t go far enough

From an original article here on stuff.co.nz >>

It is disappointing that a government inquiry into past abuse of children will be limited to those cases which originated in state care. An opportunity to address systemic abuse in non-government institutions, and particularly religious organisations, is likely to be lost.

The inquiry is one of the Government’s pledges for its first 100 days in office and will be announced shortly. However, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has already said that inquiries will begin with “the harm that we (the State) had direct responsibility for”.

Victims’ groups have called on the Government to follow Australia’s example and include non-governmental organisations such as churches, charities, community groups and sports clubs in the inquiry. For now, at least, the Government appears to be ruling this out.

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Gordon Campbell on the inquiry into the abuse of children in care

By Gordon Campbell, from an original article here on scoop.co.nz >>

Apparently, PM Jacinda Ardern has chosen to exclude faith-based institutions from the government’s promised inquiry into the abuse of children in state care. Any role for religious institutions – eg the Catholic Church – would be only to observe and to learn from any revelations that arise from the inquiry’s self-limiting focus on state-run institutions:

[Ardern] said the primary role of the inquiry was to look at the state’s responsibility….She said any religious institution with concerns needed to look at the issue, ask what they have done about the issues and their own history.

Such a narrowing of focus would be unfortunate, for a whole variety of reasons, and not merely because a more wide-ranging commission of inquiry in Australia found a high prevalence of children in care being sexually assaulted within religious institutions.

read more…

Australia: One in Three Media Release: domestic violence – the facts our media won’t tell you

One in Three, based in Australia is a diverse group of male and female professionals – academics, researchers, social workers, psychologists, counsellors, lawyers, health promotion workers, trainers and survivor/advocates.

They issued a press release on the 16th January 2018 on domestic violence. You can read this below. Visit their website here: oneinthree.com.au

1IN3+media+release+16-01-18

‘We have to do this’, Government’s commitment for independent inquiry into sexual abuse in state care reaffirmed

The government has reaffirmed its commitment to an independent inquiry into the sexual abuse of those in state care.

The news comes as survivors of abuse call for an investigation similar to Australia’s Royal Commission.

“It’s a very difficult thing to face, it’s a painful moment in a country’s history to acknowledge those past injustices,” Patrick O’Leary from the Australian Royal Commission said.

Judge Carolyn Henwood, heard from over 1000 New Zealand victims in her seven years on the confidential listening service.

“We need something independent because we haven’t yet got accountability and we haven’t got a pathway forward for the future as to how we’re going to give an access to justice,” she said.

A straight forward message coming from abuse survivor Jim Goodwin.

“We have to do this, as a country we have to do this.”

This article on TVNZ here >>

Conference Resolution Requesting Royal Commission

Update 21 December

MSSAT Aotearoa endorses a submission from the Network of Survivors of Faith-based Institutional Abuse and their Supporters for the extension of a public enquiry into the abuse of children in state care to include all faith-based institutions. The submission presents the rationale for the extension of the enquiry and and the risks of not doing so.

You can download the submission here >>

 


Update: 3 December 2017

PM confirms inquiry into state care abuse will be independent

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has confirmed an inquiry into abuse suffered in state care will be independent.

 She told TV3’s programme The Hui this morning the stories she’s heard have truly shocked her.

“There is no independent way to complain about what happens to you in our system and that is unacceptable, when you have powers like that held by the state – there has to be an independent complaints process.

“I want to know more, we are going into this with an open heart and with a chance to do things differently and that’s what I want to come out of this,” Ms Ardern said.

Read the full story here >>

 


The attendees at the 2017 International Conference of the South South Institute, Christchurch, New Zealand, 5-10 November 2017, have passed the following resolution and ask that it be presented to the Prime Minister of New Zealand by Phillip Chapman (Chair) and Ken Clearwater (National Advocate) for the Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse Trust, Aotearoa New Zealand (MSSAT Aotearoa) who are hosting this conference.

Download the Resolution here >>

View the Resolution below:

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Abuse victims demand Royal Commission

A Dunedin survivor of sexual abuse says he and others like him are ready for a long fight for justice.

A resolution was passed in Christchurch yesterday at the South-South Institute conference, which is organised by the Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse Trust, asking the Government to commit to a Royal Commission or similar level of inquiry into the institutional abuse of children in New Zealand.

The resolution asks that any New Zealand inquiry be modelled on the Australian Royal Commission into institutional responses to child sexual abuse.

Full article on the Otago Daily Times here >>

Renewed calls for Royal Commission into abuse of people in state care

Government departments could be “sheltering” child abuse perpetrators as calls for a Royal Commission into historical state care abuse remain unanswered, a judge says.

On Wednesday, experts outlined what they believe an independent inquiry into child abuse in state care before 1992 should look like.

The new Government promised an inquiry in its 100-day plan, but what shape that will take remains to be seen.

Full article on Stuff.nz here >>

Abused males want royal commission

A Dunedin man is one of more than 100 male sexual abuse survivors calling on the Government to open a royal commission into the historical sexual abuse of children.

The South-South Institute’s the third conference, organised by the Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse Trust Aotearoa, is running in Christchurch this week.

Dunedin man and sexual abuse survivor Darryl Smith is one of about 100 sexual abuse survivors attending the conference who support a royal commission into historic sexual abuse.

Mr Smith spent more than a decade in state care, in both New Zealand and Australia, beginning when he was 7 in the early 1970s.

It is likely a call for the Government to open a royal commission into historical sexual abuse cases, both in state care and other institutions, will be made during the conference.

Mr Smith said he and fellow survivors had already made their views clear at a survivor-only day on Sunday.

“As survivors we were asked what we wanted as an outcome and we were all on the same page that we wanted a royal commission, so people can be made accountable.”

The Labour Party has pledged to set up an inquiry into abuse of children in state care within its first 100 days in government.

Read the full article on the Otago Daily Times here >>

Former FBI agent and Criminal Minds writer speaking at Christchurch sexual abuse conference

A retired FBI agent who advises and writes for American TV programmes including Criminal Minds is to speak in Christchurch next month.

Jim Clemente, a globally recognised expert in sex crimes, child sexual victimisation and child abduction/homicide, is one of about 30 speakers from New Zealand and around the world who will talk at a conference organised by the Christchurch-based Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse Trust Aotearoa.

The conference, which will run from November 5-10, will be the third gathering of the South-South Institute – an international partnership involving the Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse Trust Aotearoa and the Refugee Law Project, Men of Peace and Men of Hope organisations in Uganda; and the First Step organisation in Cambodia.

Read the full article on the NZHerald here >>

FBI agent fights for sexually abused kids

A retired FBI agent has dedicated his career fighting for children who have been sexually abused, and sadly he knows all too well what they’re going through.

Jim Clemente, a former New York City prosecutor, is in Christchurch to share his story on sexual abuse, and his experience which led him to get justice for others.

He is a guest speaker at the South-South Institute’s Building Bridges International Conference about male survivors of sexual abuse.

Sexual abuse statistics in New Zealand say that one in three girls will be abused, and one in seven boys, but unfortunately Mr Clemente knows that’s not the true number.

Read the full article here >>

Male sexual abuse survivors conference to ‘take lid off can of worms and throw it away’

When Ken Clearwater was admitted to a psychiatric emergency ward after threatening to kill a man over a game of pool, he knew he needed help to deal with a secret he’d been carrying for decades.

He had been raped as a child.

Clearwater, 38 years old at the time of the outburst, had spiralled into a deep depression fuelled by drugs, alcohol, gangs and a whole lot of violence.

“Drugs and alcohol is a survival mechanism, it helps to numb the brain so we don’t have to deal with stuff going round and round in our heads,” he says.

“As males, we’re supposed to be staunch and tough. We’re not allowed to talk about things, share our feelings or else it’s seen as weak.”

Read the full article on the NZ Herald here >>

The Bristlecone Project expected to help survivors come forward

An installation telling the stories of male survivors of sexual abuse is expected to help other men open up about their own trauma.

The Bristlecone Project exhibition, featuring black-and-white photographs of 24 New Zealand men abused in childhood, opens at Canterbury Museum on Monday.

“People have been trying to hide this for so long, and now it’s going to be in the public’s face,” said Ken Clearwater, manager of the Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse Trust.

“We’re taking the lid off a can of worms and throwing the lid away. We’ve been carrying this shame and guilt for so long, it’s time people understand the damage it does.”

Read the full article on stuff.co.nz here >>

New figures on sexual abuse prompt renewed calls for inquiry

A group working with men who have been sexually abused says any inquiry into abuse needs to go beyond just that in boys’ homes.  

ACC says between 2012 and 2016 there was an almost 90 per cent increase in new sensitive claims lodged for male victims of sexual abuse.

The Labour party has pledged to set up an inquiry into abuse of children in state care within its first 100 days in government. 

Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse and Trauma Trust manager Ken Clearwater welcomed the move, but told Nine to Noon‘s Kathryn Ryan it needed to cover every institution in the country. 

Listen / Read to the full article on Radio New Zealand here >>

 

Australia: One in Three Campaign supplementary submission to Federal Parliamentary Inquiry published

(This article originally appeared here >>)

One in Three appeared on the 5th of September 2017 before the Canberra Hearing of the Federal Inquiry into a better family law system to support and protect those affected by family violence.

On 6th October 2017, we lodged a supplementary submission and answers to questions on notice, which includes in-depth case studies of two male victims of family violence, along with addidional data that dispels some of the dangerous myths about male victims.

The Inquiry has now published our supplementary submission on its website.

You can also download a copy of the supplementary submission from here (our original submission can be found here, and the transcript of our appearance at the Canberra Hearing can be found here).

You will notice that sections of the case studies have been redacted by the Inquiry for reasons of anonymity.

From the Chairman’s desk, August 2017

Kia ora

Welcome to the new web presence of the Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse Trust Aotearoa NZ (MSSAT Aotearoa).

MSSAT Aotearoa has now been in existence for three years. With the overall aim of ensuring survivors experience safety and respect throughout their journey, MSSAT Aotearoa has made considerable progress. What has been achieved during this relatively short time is commendable and includes:

  • Ongoing development of a cohesive and functioning national organisation with national policies and protocols to enable and support regional activities.
  • Development of a sound relationship with the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) where we finally have ongoing involvement in decision making. We are thrilled that the voice of survivors is being heard and acted on at this level.
  • Finalising realistic funding contracts with MSD at both national and regional levels, notably the securement of funding for this and the next financial year.
  • The creation and embedding of Ken Clearwater’s role as the National Survivor Advocate.
  • The implementation of a shared case management system – PAUA, which will support operations and enable operational reporting for future funding.
  • The estblishment of a qualifications framework and commencement of training for peer support workers.

We can rightly feel proud of these achievements. However I am aware that more work is required to:

  • Develop a sound evidence base for our peer support work and devleoping best practice protocols for supporting male survivors of sexual abuse. The upcoming international conference ‘Building Bridges’ to be held in Christchurch in November this year is a major achievement in this area as are our plans to pursue research opportunities as they arise.
  • Increase awareness of, and access to, our regional services and ensure that we have adequate funding to support a national network of quality support services.
  • Extend our support for the sustainable growth of our regional centres and identify vialble opportunities for development in those regions not currently providing services.

The future looks very positive and I would like to thank all those who have been involved in getting us to this point.

Best wishes

Philip Chapman
Chairman
MSSAT ANZ