A new sexual harm helpline, Safe to talk He pai ki te kōrero, has been launched by Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni.
The helpline provides nationwide 24/7 access to free confidential information and support to people affected by sexual harm in any way.
Safe to talk He pai ki te kōrero is operated by government-funded social enterprise Homecare Medical and went live nationally on 16 April 2018 after a successful initial test run in Canterbury.
Safe to talk is available 24 hours, seven days a week by:
- Calling: 0800 044 334
- Texting: 4334
- Emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Live webchat on www.safetotalk.nz that also has a range of great resources and information about sexual harm.
“Anyone, anywhere who is affected by sexual harm can use Safe to talk He pai ki te kōrero. It’s for survivors, concerned whānau and people who have harmed others or who may be thinking about harming others," Carmel Sepuloni says.
“So far more than 665 people have made contact with the helpline since it went live nationally in April this year.
“We recognise that it can be really hard for people affected by sexual harm to reach out for support. I’d like to emphasise that anyone contacting the helpline can say as little or as much as they like – and they can remain anonymous if they want to.
“Feedback from the first few weeks of national operation shows that the ability to remain anonymous or provide only a first name is helping people to feel comfortable with accessing the service.
“The online chat function is proving a popular communication method, followed by calls, text messaging and then emails.”