Radio NZ informed of error concerning DV statistics
Dear Morning Report
At 8:28am today 03/08/2015 you broadcast an article entitled ‘Judge says change needed to make protection orders effective’. Your announcer commenced by stating “14 women, 6 men and 10 children are killed by a member of their family every year on average; pretty extraordinary statistics…”. Your web site also states “Fourteen women, six men and ten children are killed by a member of their family every year on average…”.
These statistics are wrong. In fact, every year on average 17 women, 13 men and 11 children were said by the Family Violence Deaths Review Committee (FVDRC) to have been killed by a member of their family from 2009 to 2012, the latest years that the FVDRC has reported on. One further child per year was said to have died due to neglect. The erroneous figures you have published badly underestimate male victimization.
Your statistic was almost correct regarding children but for adults you may have misunderstood the FVDRC figures pertaining only to homicides caused by intimate partners (as shown in Table 3 in the latest FVDRC report) rather than adding in the deaths caused by other family members (as shown in Table 25). Or perhaps you were simply given the wrong figures by your highly unbalanced selection of interviewees.
The Ministry for Men would like to see an end to false and misleading statistics in the important area of family violence, in order both to reach understandings that might finally be effective for reducing this problem and to reduce the misandry that for too long has been actively fostered through propaganda and unbalanced reporting. Unfortunately, the direction promoted by Morning Report’s unbalanced selection of interviewees this morning will be unlikely to achieve its purported aims.
The FVDRC figures are likely to under report true male victimization rates in fatal family violence. Due to decades of misleading propaganda concerning this important topic most people have come to believe that domestic violence is almost totally perpetrated by males against females. This belief is likely to affect all parties involved in investigating, determining, recording and reporting the nature of domestic violence deaths. For example, some deaths may have been wrongly attributed to accidents or to non-family violence in order to shield a female perpetrator from consequences.
The FVDRC report itself was very femicentric and their figures frankly cannot be trusted to be accurate. For example, your error in deriving the true victimization numbers was due to the fact that the FVDRC did not provide overall adult death statistics so it is necessary to combine two of their tables printed in widely separated parts of the report in order to gain a realistic picture. We believe this obfuscation was deliberate because the true picture was inconvenient to the FVDRC’s ideological agenda.
Nevertheless, the FVDRC statistics are the only ones readily available and the Ministry for Men expects that at least those statistics are accurately reported.
The Ministry for Men acknowledges that men cause most of NZ’s serious physical violence but will be grateful when the smaller yet significant rate of serious violence committed by women is no longer ignored or trivialized. That goes also for the much more gender equal rates of less serious violence and non-physical violence perpetrated by women. Such honest acknowledgement of the facts will be essential for an accurate understanding of causes and solutions.
The Ministry for Men however commends National Radio for bothering to mention male victims at all. This is a welcome change from your previous pattern of only mentioning the female victimization rates. We trust that you will maintain this commitment towards more accurate and balanced reporting by publishing an acknowledgement that the figures you published were erroneous and providing a correction.
Ministry for Men (Formerly the Ministry of Men’s Affairs), a community group because successive governments have neglected the voice and welfare of NZ men.