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Guest lecture

Family Violence

Event series: 


New Zealand continues to have one of the highest rates of Family Violence in OECD countries. Both child abuse and intimate partner violence rates are at epidemic proportions, significantly impacting New Zealand socio‐economic growth. Family violence impacts all societal sectors and Government Ministries, and will continue to drain national resources until a multi‐systemic approach is effectively implemented.

Family violence and its negative consequences are treatable and preventable. Family violence effects; health, mental health, substance use, employment, school achievement, productivity, criminal behaviour, and overall wellbeing. On average one child is killed every 5 weeks; 1 in 4 girls before the age of 15 have been touched sexually or made to do something sexually they did not want to do; 1 in 8 boys have experienced sexual abuse (likely much higher, as this is still under reported); 1 in 3 women experience psychological or physical abuse from their partners in their lifetime; police are called to around 200 domestic violence situations a day (one every seven minutes on average); and more than half of all reported violent crime in New Zealand is family violence.

This lecture will review NZ research/literature on family violence; its socio-economic impact; and present evidenced based multi‐systemic models for treatment and prevention.

About Ruth Gammon

Ruth A. Gammon, PhD, MSW is a Senior Lecturer and Director of the Psychology Clinic at Massey University in Wellington, after being a child and family practitioner in the San Francisco Bay Area for over 30 years. Dr. Gammon teaches in the areas of child and family psychology with specialties in family violence, trauma, child protection services and youth justice.

Dr. Gammon has provided a continuum of care for youth and families in the San Francisco Bay Area in residential, day treatment, community and school based settings. As a Clinical Director for several NGOs in the San Francisco Bay Area, she developed wraparound and school based programs for high and complex needs youth and their families. She continues to practice and teach as a Registered Clinical Psychologist and provides consultation, supervision, treatment and assessment for Women's Refuge, CYFs, ACC and Family Court.

Her current research includes: family violence; victims of family violence experiences' in Family Court; and Wraparound programs for youth with high and complex needs.

Note: Papers, presentation slides and any other material provided by the Guest Lecturer will be made available some time after the lecture at Publications > Media & Speeches > Guest Lectures by Visiting Academics.

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Last updated: 
Wednesday, 15 July 2015