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Remove Gendered Language From New Zealand Rape Laws

Filed under: Law & Courts,Sex Abuse / CYF — Hugin @ 8:21 pm Mon 13th June 2016

Currently under New Zealand law section 128 which deals with sexual violation there are two options. Rape and unlawful sexual connection. Of the two only men can be charged with rape as it is defined as:

“(2) Person A rapes person B if person A has sexual connection with person B, effected by the penetration of person B’s genitalia by person A’s penis,—
(a) without person B’s consent to the connection; and
(b) without believing on reasonable grounds that person B consents to the connection.” (Crimes Act 1961)

The requirement of penetration by a penis excludes all women as rapists. We believe this is an unnecessary distinction and is inherently sexist. We would like to see the gender specific language, (penis), removed from this definition so that all rapists, regardless of gender can be charged with rape.

There have been several recent court cases involving women forcing boys to have sex. If they were men they would have been charged with rape but as women this was not possible.

We believe forced sex regardless of the gender of either victim or perpetrator is rape. The law as it stands denies equality as unlawful sexual connection is not punishable by as harsh a sentence as rape.

It denies victimhood to many females and males who have been forced to have sex by a woman.

In addressing this change in language we hope that it will be easier for victims to report such crimes and seek justice.

If you believe that New Zealand rape laws need to changed so that they reflect gender equality then please sign this petition.

2 Responses to “Remove Gendered Language From New Zealand Rape Laws”

  1. Man X Norton says:

    Unlawful sexual connection and rape are NOT different in their sentencing tariffs. Either amounts to ‘sexual violation’ and is punishable by a maximum of 20 years imprisonment:

    128B Sexual violation

    (1)Every one who commits sexual violation is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 20 years.

    (2)A person convicted of sexual violation must be sentenced to imprisonment unless, having regard to the matters stated in subsection (3), the court thinks that the person should not be sentenced to imprisonment.

    (3)The matters are—
    (a)the particular circumstances of the person convicted; and
    (b)the particular circumstances of the offence, including the nature of the conduct constituting it.

    The actual administration of the law is almost always sexist as with every other offending category; if done by a woman she is almost certain to receive a lesser punishment than a man for equivalent offending.

    There are good reasons to remove the gendered language from our rape law, but even more so for other gendered laws that actually do have differential, sexist sentencing tariffs. Male Assaults Female is punishable by twice the punishment than for any equivalent offence for which a woman could be prosecuted, while Infanticide allows women to murder young children with a maximum of 3 years imprisonment whereas a male would receive life imprisonment for exactly the same murder.

  2. MurrayBacon says:

    I suggest that judges who are inappropriately affected by gender should be removed.

    Unless legislation is enacted by judges able to work properly, it will never work as intended by Parliament. Without a working accountability system monitoring judges, there is insufficient pressure on judges to follow legislation anyway.

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