New Expert Advisory Group on Family Violence announced

  • Tariana Turia
Social Development

The Associate Minister for Social Development, Tariana Turia today announced the establishment of an Expert Advisory Group on Family Violence in New Zealand.

“The Expert Advisory Group on Family Violence is being formed to provide independent strategic advice to assist Government to determine key priority actions to address family violence in New Zealand,” says Minister Turia.

“The Group has a range of expertise and experience in this field and will work towards solutions by the end of 2013. The members have been chosen not only for their expertise, but also for their commitment to action.  As a result their advice is expected to be able to be translated into change on the ground that is tangible and measureable.”

“A whole-of-government approach to family violence is vital and means we need to identify where there may be duplication of services or gaps in addressing family violence and ensure there are linkages with other strategic priorities.”

“Independent advice is an important component in achieving an effective, well-integrated family violence system which delivers accessible, high quality services for all New Zealanders who are affected by family violence.”

“The support of a range of services working hand in hand is what truly turns lives around. The Expert Advisory Group will help us ensure that irrespective of where violence occurs throughout the country, all those affected should be able to seek the appropriate social services, for example stopping violence programmes alongside alcohol and other drug treatment services.”

Appointments to the Expert Advisory Group on Family Violence

Paul von Dadelszen (Chair) is a former barrister and solicitor, and Judge of the District and Family Courts.  In May 2011 he became a member of the Queen’s Service Order for services to the Family Court. He is highly regarded for his commitment to public access to justice and to working towards a better Family Court system.  He is a current member of the Family Violence Death Review Committee.

Merepeka Raukawa–Tait is a member of the Taskforce for Action on Violence within Families’ Maori Reference Group. Ms Raukawa-Tait is a member of the Whanau Ora Governance Group responsible for overseeing the implementation of Whanau Ora and Deputy Chair of Te Arawa on the Whanau Ora regional leadership group.  She was the Chief Executive of Women's Refuge for three years to 2001, and is well-known for her strong stance against family violence.

Dr James Prescott is a Families Commissioner, a senior lecturer in accounting at the Auckland University of Technology and programme leader for the accounting component of the Bachelor of Business degree. Dr Prescott has extensive networks with the Pacific communities across a number of sectors including education, health, broadcasting and commerce.

Dr Susan Jane Huhana Hickey is a Research Fellow (PhD), a lecturer at the Auckland University of Technology, and a practising lawyer, with a particular interest in representing people with disabilities.  She is on the Human Rights Review Tribunal, and has her own consultancy that researches human rights issues for indigenous people with disabilities and provides social justice advocacy services. 

Dr Janet Fanslow is an Associate Professor in Mental Health Promotion at the School of Population Health, University of Auckland, and Co-Director of the New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse. Dr Fanslow is the principal investigator of the New Zealand Violence against Women Study, and the author of a number of reports and guidelines regarding Family Violence, Child and Partner Abuse, and Elder Abuse and Neglect.

Associate Professor Julia Tolmie is the Chairperson of the Family Violence Death Review Committee and an Associate Professor, Faculty of Law at Auckland University. Associate Professor Tolmie has researched and published on the subjects of battered woman syndrome and intoxication as criminal defences, fathers’ rights groups in the context of family law, corporate social responsibility, and child contact arrangements in the context of domestic violence.

Everdina Fuli is a member of the Taskforce for Action on Violence within Families’ Pacific Advisory Group.  She is currently the Business Manager at Te Whare Kura, a research institute based at the Faculty of Arts, University of Auckland. Ms Fuli has spent the last 15 years in research and contract management, directorships, senior academia and management positions whilst working very closely with Pacific and Māori people in New Zealand.  She has published in areas of health, education, employment, family, and women.  Ms Fuli is from Fakaofo, Tokelau and Ngāti Porou.

Jane Stevens is a senior community advisor at Community Waikato, a social services organisation. Ms Stevens has worked in community development for the past 35 years. She has played key roles in the evolution of Ngaruawahia Community House, Melville Te Whare Kokonga Community House, and Hamilton East Waimarie Community House.

Associate Professor Peter J. Adams works at the University of Auckland, within the School of Population Heath. He has developed and led teaching programmes for the Social and Community Health department, specifically in alcohol and drug studies, mental health and health promotion and has researched and published on the subjects of violence, Asian health, addictive behaviour, gambling and community development.