Wednesday, 11 August 2010

on not putting your money where your mouth is

i'm busy at work so don't have time to cover this issue properly, but here is gordon campbell on the post on the government's decision to not pay compensation to women who were raped & abused by police officers:

Once again, the Key government has shown it doesn’t give a stuff about issues that primarily affect women. Cabinet has rejected an official recommendation to compensate the victims of a rape culture that existed within the Police It has also shown no interest in taking action to address gender pay inequities. In addition, its welfare working group has stigmatized women on the DPB despite the fact that most women are on this benefit for a relatively short time....

To many though, the decision to reject the rape compensation will be particularly galling. Barely a fortnight after Police Minister Judith Collins blamed the media for the growing lack of respect for the Police among the public, Cabinet has decided to abandon a group of vulnerable women that Police officers had preyed upon. According to Attorney- General Finlayson, there is no legal basis for such a payment. Well, duh. That’s why the forum set up by the Clark government to liaise with the victims had recommended to government that an ‘ex gratia’ payment should be made, given the circumstances. That’s what ex gratia payments are. They are made when no official avenue exists to address a clear moral obligation.

please do go and read the whole thing. and also this post at the standard, especially comments relating to hon mr finlayson's "floodgates" response. i can't even begin to express how sickening this decision is. it means a lack of any kind of justice for victims or responsibility by the crown. after all that these women have suffered, and the bravery of engaging in this process, it's a very cruel result.

moreover, this is a government that has spewed out so many words about the importance of victims rights, yet when the chance comes to do something simple and concrete, they don't want to spend the money.


Deborah said...

But they're the wrong sort of victims, stargazer. They weren't attacked by people the Nacts could call low life scum. They were attacked by the patriarchy, and as I'm sure you know, when a woman is attacked by a powerful man, it's always the woman's fault.


And heading off to go and bang my head on my desk.

Carol said...

Wow. Disdain for women is right. Gordon Campbell says that the Nats are cutting aid for women and children in Vanuatu, at the same time as pledging to pay for Pacific Leaders to go to the Rugby World Cup: lots of money for rugby, little money for, or consideration of women in need. And because they're afraid of the floodgates being opened for a lot more similar claims nagainst the police.