Kiwi Party Calls For Prime Minister To Repeal New Zealand Prostitution Law
Last week we have observed another White Ribbon Day. Laudable statements have been made by the heads of our government agencies, celebrities, and politicians that violence against women will not be tolerated in New Zealand.
The Stop the Demand foundation has reminded us in their press release “that we have recently witnessed a litany of cases of women callously murdered, some of whom were raped either before or after their death. We think of:
* Marie Davis (15, of Christchurch)
* Jashana Robinson (16, of Titahi Bay)
* Emma Agnew (20, of Christchurch)
* Joelene Rangimaria (21, of Titahi Bay, mother of two)
* Sophie Elliott (22, of Dunedin)
* Tisha Lowry (28, of Christchurch)
* An An Liu (28, of Auckland, mother of “Pumpkin”)
* Rebecca Somerville (35, of Christchurch)
* Leanne Kingston (39, of Papakura, mother of four)
* Helen Meads (42, of Matamata, businesswoman and mother).
We have witnessed a parade of husbands, former partners or boyfriends, neighbours, and strangers – across ethnicities, ages, occupations – some in business suits, charged with acts of violence arising from rage, jealously, possessiveness, sexual obsession and self-obsession.”
Kiwi Party leader Larry Baldock said, “I am reminded of one of the darkest days of my political life, June 23rd, 2003, when our House of Representatives passed the Prostitution Law Reform Act by 60 votes in favour, 59 against and I abstention.
By the slimmest of margins possible we passed a law in this country declaring prostitution to be a legitimate form of work for women. Despite Parliament’s misguided attempt to make sex work safe for women, it is and will remain, the breeding ground for violent acts and attitudes towards women.”
“New Zealand’s new law was considered out of step with moves in many other nations around the world. They were passing laws to criminalise those engaged in the purchase of sexual services in an attempt to reduce the demand that has been fuelling the massive increase in the trafficking of women and children across national boarders for sexual slavery.
“Later in 2003, Gordon Copeland and I co-sponsored a CIR Petition to promote a referendum seeking the repeal of the PR Act 2003. Along with other organisations and volunteers we collected just over 200,000 signatures in 14 months before the petition lapsed.
“This week on behalf of Kiwi Party president Gordon Copeland, and all our Board members, I renew our party’s commitment to ensuring that a referendum is held to give every Kiwi a chance to give their support to overturning the law that was passed by such a slim margin,” said Mr Baldock.
Speaking recently at the Family Forum in Auckland Prime Minister John Key said, “The reason I voted against the prostitution law was that I had to look NZ parents in the eye and say what message am I trying to send, and I wasn’t satisfied that the message that said its ok for your kids to be involved in prostitution, or for their children to be involved in prostitution was the right one because I don’t think it is.”
This week John Key issued his statement in support of White Ribbon Day saying that “it makes a strong statement that violence against women will not be tolerated in New Zealand.”
He said, “I’d like to acknowledge the thousands of New Zealanders who support the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and who are speaking out to end abuse against women. I’d also like to thank the many organisations – like Stop The Demand – taking a stand on this issue.”
“Prime Minister I agree with you that the Prostitution Reform Act was the wrong message to send to the nation. Now that you are in charge of our Government I call on you to have the courage to take a stand on your convictions and alter this wrong message you acknowledge was sent by Parliament when it passed the Prostitution Reform Act.
“The elimination of violence against women will never be achieved when we pretend that sex work is an acceptable career choice for any woman in this country. If men are given the legal protection of the state to purchase women as objects for sexual pleasure, it is inevitable that violence toward women will increase,” Mr Baldock said.