Exposing economic abuse

New Zealand’s hidden economic abuse issue was recently exposed, on the back of new research released by our client Good Shepherd New Zealand (GSNZ).

The report revealed Kiwi women are being reduced to poverty by their partners. Economic abuse is silent and doesn’t discriminate – affecting women of all socio-economic groups, locations and cultural backgrounds.

Convergence worked with GSNZ to officially launch the findings, which included lobbying the Government for new legislation and better victim support.

A comprehensive media and stakeholder strategy was prepared. The aim was to increase awareness and understanding of economic abuse in the community, corporate and government sectors, while simultaneously raising the profile of GSNZ.

Sunday Star Times broke the story with an exclusive page three article and photo. Widespread national media coverage, acknowledgement from the Prime Minister and meetings with MPs ensued.

More than 20 news items on the research were published or broadcast by leading media outlets in the following days – including New Zealand Herald, Stuff, Newstalk ZB and Radio Live.

The Spinoff published an in-depth opinion piece by GSNZ on the issue, titled ‘The silent weapon controlling women in New Zealand’. The article generated a lot of feedback on family violence, and Buller District Councillor Greg Hart read it to attendees at a White Ribbon event in Westport.

Convergence was successful in helping GSNZ uncover New Zealand’s hidden issue of economic abuse. It’s a privilege to work for an organisation that’s prepared to lead the tough conversations in support of people experiencing disadvantage.