Sexual violence study calls for consent education for men and boys


Sexual violence expert calls for better consent and sex education for men and boys due to common offenses.

Associate Professor Janet Fanslow.
Photo: RNZ / Dan Cook.

New research shows that the rate of New Zealand women experiencing partner sexual violence – one in six – has generally been stable for 80 years.

The research, published in the journal “Social Science & Medicine,” also found a rate of one in five child victims of sexual abuse and one in 14 non-partner sexual assault victims.

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The study’s lead researcher Janet Fanslow, associate professor at the University of Auckland, said the offense was mainly due to a failure to involve men in preventative measures such as better educating men about sexual consent and healthy relationships.

“We really need to think about how we are working to involve men and boys in gender equality issues,” Fanslow said.

“It’s a really big problem that has a very big impact, and if we’re not happy with it, we actually need to do something to change it.”

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While there were examples of countries overseas taking preventive measures in education and other areas, New Zealand had fallen behind in adopting a largely punitive approach to sexual offenses. , Fanslow said.

The research was based on a 2003 survey of 2,855 women in Auckland and Waikato, and a 2019 study of 1,464 women in Auckland, Northland and Waikato.

The women were asked about their experiences of sexual abuse.

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Where to get help

New Zealand Police

Help for victims 0800 842 846

Rape crisis 0800 88 33 00

Rape prevention education

HELP Call 24/7 (Auckland): 09623 1700, (Wellington): be 04801 6655 – 0

Safe to talk: a confidential 24/7 helpline for survivors, support people and people with harmful sexual behavior: 0800044334.

Mosaic – Tiaki Tangata Peer support for men with trauma and sexual abuse: 0800 94 22 94



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