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曾偉雄錯誤理解家暴 盡顯無知

2015/3/24 — 11:30

【《法政匯思》短評:關於警務處處長對「家庭暴力」定義的理解】
THE PROGRESSIVE LAWYERS GROUP'S SHORT COMMENTARY REGARDING THE POLICE COMMISSIONER'S UNDERSTANDING OF THE DEFINITION OF "DOMESTIC VIOLENCE"

上星期六,警務處處長曾偉雄表示,「家庭暴力」 (簡稱 「家暴」) 只是指配偶或有親密關係的伴侶之間的暴力,如果不屬於這個範圍,例如只是親屬之間的暴力就不是家暴,所以家暴指引並不適用。

曾偉雄完全錯誤地理解現行法例對「家暴」的定義和規管。他的言論更表現了他對政府在2007/2008年就有關條例作大幅度修訂的無知。

廣告

根據律政司在2009年發表的《檢控涉及家庭暴力案件的政策》,家庭暴力包括家庭成員之間的暴力或恐嚇行為的任何刑事罪行。

另外,《家庭及同居關係暴力條例》是現行主要針對家暴問題的法例。有關條例主要讓家暴受害人可以循民事途徑向法院申請禁制令,限制施虐者騷擾或接近受害人,以保護受害人免受進一步傷害。根據條例的第3、3A和3B條,所有家庭或親屬關係的成員,包括配偶、父母、子女、叔伯兄弟、姨媽姑姐以至同居人士等等,不論年齡或性別,均一律受條例保障。

廣告

該條例的前身是《家庭暴力條例》,早在1986年已生效實施,但該條例一直被婦女團體及社福機構批評,只保障已婚的夫婦及異性同居者,無法有效處理不同類型的家暴問題。聯合國也在2006年的報告中強調,這個法律的漏洞直接或間接地助長了對兒童及婦女的家暴。因此,於2004年天水圍家暴慘案發生後,在社會強大的輿論壓力下,政府終於在2007年提出修訂《家暴條例》,擴大條例的保障範圍。最後,政府所提的修訂草案,就把家暴中的家庭關係定義大幅度擴闊至包含所有親屬關係,即現時條例第3A條對 ‘親屬’的定義。

香港政府一直奉行對家庭暴力「零容忍」的政策。可惜,曾偉雄的言論既展示他對家暴問題的錯誤理解及無知,亦嚴重地誤導公眾及家暴受害者。或許,警隊一哥比起前線警員更有需要接受處理家暴案件的培訓!

法政匯思
2015年3月24日

Last Saturday, Police Commissioner Andy Tsang Wai-hung said that "domestic violence" only refers to violence between spouses or partners who have an intimate relationship, and any violence beyond such types of relationship, such as violence between relatives, do not fall within the definition of domestic violence and are therefore not subject to guidelines in relation to domestic violence.

Mr Tsang is entirely wrong in his understanding of the definition of “domestic violence” and laws governing it.  His comments also demonstrate his ignorance of the substantial revisions made by the Government to the relevant legislation in 2007-2008.

Under "The Policy for Prosecuting Cases involving Domestic Violence" issued by the Department of Justice in 2009, domestic violence includes any criminal offence which arises out of violence, threatening behaviour between family members.

In addition, the Domestic and Cohabitation Relationships Ordinance is the main legislation currently in force in relation to the issue of domestic violence. This Ordinance enables victims of domestic violence to apply, through civil proceedings, for injunction orders from the Court which restrains offenders from molesting or contacting the victims, in order to protect them from further harm. Under Sections 3, 3A and 3B of the Ordinance, all family members or relatives, including spouses, parents, children, siblings, uncles, aunts, nephews, nieces or cousins, as well as cohabitants, are equally protected under the Ordinance irrespective of age or gender.

The predecessor to this Ordinance was the Domestic Violence Ordinance, which came into force long ago in 1986.  However, that Ordinance was criticised by women's groups and social welfare organisations as only protecting married couples and heterosexual cohabitants, and could not effectively deal with different types of domestic violence problems.  The United Nations emphasised in a 2006 report that such legal loopholes had contributed directly or indirectly to domestic violence involving children and women.  It was only after the domestic violence tragedy in Tin Shui Wai in 2004 that the Government finally responded to strong public pressure by proposing to amend that former Ordinance in 2007, under which an expansion of the scope of legislative protection was proposed.  Finally, the draft amendments proposed by the Government expanded widely the definition of family relationships in domestic violence to cover all kinships, in other words, the definition of “relative” under section 3A of current Ordinance.

The Hong Kong Government has always observed a policy of “zero tolerance” towards domestic violence.  Sadly, Mr Tsang’s comments not only revealed his misunderstanding and ignorance towards the scourge of domestic violence, they have also seriously misled the public and victims of domestic violence.  Perhaps our police chief is even more in need of training on handling domestic violence cases than his frontline officers!

Progressive Lawyers Group
24 March 2015

(文章標題由編輯所擬)

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