Speak Up, Seek Help, Safe Home

The Speak Up, Seek Help, Safe Home family violence guide

This guide, Speak Up, Seek Help, Safe Home, is to help women from different cultures and their families live without violence at home

Speak Up, Seek Help, Safe Home leaflet (PDF 320 KB)

Advice and help in other languages

Services that provide advice and support are there to help everyone – women, men and children – no matter what their language or culture.

The campaign for Action on Family Violence

Women who are experiencing family violence can:

  • get advice from government and community services that is free and confidential
  • get relationship advice
  • get immigration advice if their relationship status changes
  • get help finding a temporary place to live
  • get legal protection for them, their children and/or their families.

Services in New Zealand take trust and privacy very seriously, and will not share information without a person agreeing.

Services can also use a professional telephone or face-to-face interpreter.

Family violence is against the law in New Zealand
Family violence is when someone is being physically, emotionally or sexually hurt or abused by a member of their family.

It’s not OK to be…

  • hit, slapped, punched, strangled, kicked or physically hurt in any other way
  • threatened or blackmailed
  • forced to have sex or perform sexual acts
  • refused money, food, shelter or clothing
  • threatened with having children taken away
  • separated or isolated from family or community
  • held against their will
  • forced into marriage. It is also against the law if they are under 16 years old.

New Zealand is a democracy – everyone has rights and responsibilities.

In New Zealand, everyone has the right to be free from violence. This means all women living in New Zealand have the right to:

  • leave a violent relationship
  • provide a safe home environment for their children
  • say ‘no’ if they don’t want to do something
  • work*
  • study.*

*dependent on immigration or citizenship status

Women don’t have to leave their husband or partner before they get help.
Government and community services take trust and privacy issues very seriously

How you can help
If you know someone who is experiencing family violence, you can help them.

You can:

  • tell them that violence in the family is not OK
  • pass on the information in this brochure
  • talk about the services available to them, and how to contact them
  • support and encourage them to contact those services

If someone is being hurt or in danger, call the Police on 111 immediately.

Organisations that can help

The Family Services Directory is a searchable online database. It lists information about social service organisations that provide services and programmes for families.

An 0800 Family Violence Information Line (0800 456 450) provides self-help information and connects people to services where appropriate. It is available seven days a week, from 9am to 11pm, with an after-hours message redirecting callers in the case of an emergency.

If you are worried about a child and don't want to give your name or theirs, you can phone 0508FAMILY for some ideas about what to do.

For more information visit the Family Violence - it's not OK website.

This information has been developed in consultation with women from diverse ethnic communities by the Office of Ethnic Affairs and the Ministry of Women’s Affairs.