I’m sure you can all imagine my glee at the news that Family Fist has been threatened with de-registration as a charity.
The thing is, I totally called this the other way, when I was assessing Right To Forced Pregnancy’s threats against Women’s Health Action and Family Planning, to lobby to get them de-registered on the grounds of being political advocacy groups, not charities.
Mea culpa, chaps.
Because I was chiefly focused on whether political advocacy in of itself was a reason for de-registering, I didn’t actually look at what constitutes “charitable purposes”. Because while you can do some political lobbying if it’s aligned with your charitable works, you still have to have sufficient charitable purposes in the first place.
These are outlined on the Charity Commission’s website, and – just so we’re clear that attacking women- and reproductive-focused organisations is still pointless – includes:
- promoting public health (such as providing education, counselling, and rehabilitation services)
Unfortunately, “getting Bob McCoskrie’s name in the paper a lot” doesn’t seem to fall under any of the actual categories of charitable purposes. Boo fucking hoo.
… for being part of this initiative to talk to communities and young folk about depression and suicide.
It’s been one of my major insta-rage issues since I was a teenager: the constant rhetoric around youth suicide and how we just shouldn’t talk about it because then the stupid teenagers will just copy-cat suicide.
Newsflash: Kiwi youth are managing to kill themselves just fine without the “encouragement” of people talking about it as a serious issue.
It will never stop baffling me how people will honestly argue that the solution to youth depression and suicide is to make those suffering from depression feel more alone and more ashamed and more like a complete failure – because hey, everyone else is getting along just fine! They must be fine! Because they never talk about feeling like crap for no reason at all! So I must be a giant failure!!!
It’s fucking heartless.
Wellington Rape Crisis is looking for collectors for their Annual Appeal. Visit their Facebook page for more info.
Last year WRC faced having to reduce its hours of operation, even as its rate of contacts had nearly doubled. Then, they had to rely on positive-media-attention-seeking bribe money from Hell Pizza to re-open their doors.
They provide an absolutely critical service which saves women’s lives and which in any truly just society would be securely government funded.
I’ll have a $20 in my pocket for 12 April. I bloody well hope you do too.
Following on from the funding shortfall at Wellington Rape Crisis, now it’s Auckland’s turn.
The HELP Foundation take 12,000 calls a year, and despite government promises to assist them … yep, they’re in trouble. More info and account details to make a donation in this article – please note at this point the donation account is only open until 26 October.
On the cynical side of things, does anyone really think it’s coincidental that these two crises for organisations providing badly-needed services, in an area Good Decent People don’t like to talk about at the dinner table, have occurred so close together? Take it away, NRT:
There’s an obvious pattern that emerges from these two incidents: the government doesn’t care about rape victims. These services cost a pittance, and yet there is no money for them. Why? Because unlike tax cuts, inflated CEO salaries, there’s no obvious benefit to rich white men like themselves.
Funding services for sexual assault victims also doesn’t fit the smile-and-wave idiom, nor provide a great opportunity to rark up people who think of themselves as “middle-class” about Not Getting Their Fair Share.
Can you imagine if our government – and that’s any government, not just the current one – treated sexual assault like benefit fraud?
Wellington Rape Crisis has managed to achieve its funding goal in just a week (yes, somewhat thanks to a bunch of sensationalist marketing wanks who fucked up and tried to buy their way out of it). This means they can keep operating – for this financial year.
And that’s ignoring the fact that their return to “full” services is still only five days a week. They can’t afford to be a 24/7 organisation.
So their problems aren’t over. They need ongoing support, and since our government provides minimal financial aid – and does such a spectacular job of supporting sexual violence survivors themselves – that means we have to keep doing it.
Of course, this is the rightwing dream: see, we all have our own money and we choose where to spend it!
Except Rape Crisis isn’t a bakery. It’s not a car yard. It provides a very necessary service to people in need, and its survival shouldn’t be premised on its appeal or urgent pleas for aid when things get too tight.
As of Monday, Wellington Rape Crisis has had to cut its services to sexual assault victims from 5 days a week to 4.
They need $55,000 by 1 April or they can’t keep operating.
Our government does as little as it possibly can for survivors of sexual assault. We shouldn’t need organisations like Wellington Rape Crisis filling a much-needed gap, but they do. Between 2011 and 2012 their client contacts have nearly doubled and now they can only provide their incredibly-needed help from Monday to Thursday each week.
As the PSA says, they need more than cake stalls.
Please help Wellington Rape Crisis.
My single cynical thought on this whole thing is that maybe if the Salvation Army weren’t a bunch of preachy, charity-hogging thugs, Rape Crisis might be in a better financial position.
Via LudditoJourno, Wellington Rape Crisis is holding its annual appeal on 13 April this year.
It’s one day of the year when I am guaranteed to give money to a street collector.
Protip, alleged Christians: shitting all over the little guy (where guy = women victims of sexual assault) when you collect $800k annually? Probably not something Jesus was down with.
[Trigger warning for suicide and emotionally-blackmailing religious proselytizing]
You know what’s not fucking compassionate?
Leaving anonymous, unbranded envelopes in people’s mailboxes which read only:
“You will never know what it meant to me to be able to come and see you at the lowest time in my life… you stopped me from doing something I would have regretted forever.”
And then contains a fucking marketing letter signed by the Sisters of Compassion Congregational Leader Sister Margaret Anne Mills, full of “here’s all the good work we do” and “we’re praying for Christchurch” and oh, “please give us money and remember us in your will”.
Sorry, Sisters of Compassion. I’m not in much of a fucking giving mood towards religious organisations which indulge in cheap emotional blackmail and don’t give a fuck about considering that in a country with a massive youth suicide rate, people may be a wee bit fucking sensitive to being reminded of the people who have done something which we get to regret forever, the people we couldn’t fucking help, the times in our lives when we ourselves have had to reach out to people who we don’t even know how to thank.
(And don’t fucking start me on how, given the fucking tragic proportion of gay, lesbian, bi, trans and other queer youth making up those aforementioned suicide statistics, the lack of fucking compassion they’ve received from the fucking Catholic Church makes this beyond ironic.)