The Police Commissioner, and White Ribbon Ambassador Mike Bush, hosted the annual NZ Police White Ribbon Breakfast at Police National Headquarters, Wellington on the 24th November. The senior police executive, guests, and heads of other agencies attended, with about 50 people in place for the 7am start.
Mike Bush spoke very clearly on his own personal commitment to White Ribbon and detailed a number of police activities. He spoke of the Accreditation programme and referred to NZDF and Billy Graham Youth Foundation – both of whom were present. He made the point that business houses, and especially government agencies, had to ensure that they had safe work conditions for their staff, and sound and well balanced policies.
He closed by showing a short video song by Tina Cross where NZ Police had joined with It’s Not OK and Tina, to produce a powerful non violence song.
Police Minister Stuart Nash spoke and affirmed the governments commitment to reducing family harm in all it’s forms. He was especially focused on the prevention of crime and reducing the number of people in prison. His very well delivered address was a positive affirmation of the government commitment to reducing family violence.
Leslie Elliot spoke passionately of the Loves Me Not campaign and emphasised that this was now operating in over 100 secondary schools. She also spoke of her commitment to White Ribbon as a key part of her message to teenagers, and especially teenage women. The Commissioner thanked Lesley for her commitment and passion.
A family violence survivor and now an advocate, Toni Katu, brought the discussions to a close with a heart rending story of her own survival from family harm, in a powerful and passionate address, which really struck home.
The White Ribbon messages were clearly displayed throughout and the Commissioner referred to the on going work – “365 days a year by White Ribbon and not just on this one day.”