Report shows Government failing on violence against children

The Salvation Army’s report A Mountain All Can Climb shows the need for the Government to do more to address the issue of violence against children, said the Green Party today.

The report, released today, shows that recorded offences against children increased by 3.5% over the year to 30 June 2014 and has increased 56% from 2009 figures.

The increase in offences against children in the 2013-2014 year was almost entirely due to reported assaults on children, which increased by 7.4%.

“How many more children need to become victims of violence before the Government realises that we need prevention and support at the top of the cliff, not just ambulances at the bottom?” Green Party Social Development Spokesperson Jan Logie said today.

"The Green Party urges the Government to immediately adopt a whole of government approach to reducing domestic violence, including comprehensive prevention measures for the family and home, schools, community and broader society at all levels.

“We need to strengthen cross-sector care and support services, including early interventions, for children and young people experiencing or at risk of violence, abuse and neglect.

Ms Logie finds it hard to reconcile the increase in offences against children with the reduction in cases of child abuse and neglect substantiated by Child Youth and Family (CYF) revealed by the report.

“The report suggests that this may be due to a change in the threshold being applied by CYF.

“Social Development Minister Anne Tolley must look into this issue to find out if CYF has changed its substantiation practices or thresholds, as the report suggests, and if so determine whether such changes are appropriate,” said Ms Logie