Family First NZ, a registered charity with the Charities Commission, is calling on the Tauranga District Council to follow the lead of the Kapiti Coast District Council and pass a bylaw outlawing public nudity on the coastline. It is also calling on the government to amend the Crimes Act and Summary Offences Act so that the precedent to allow public nudity, set in past cases by liberal judges on events such as the ‘Boobs on Bikes’, can be overturned.
Family First’s call comes in response to the concerns expressed by Papamoa Beach residents who are opposing a nudist event in their area this weekend.
“Families are rightly concerned that they and their children may be confronted by full nudity in a public place,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ. “Freedom of expression must never be at the expense of the right to protect children and families from offensive and inappropriate behaviour. We would not allow nudists to expose themselves in shopping centres or outside schools. Doing it on the beach where there are families is no different.”
Kapiti Coast District Council passed a Beach Bylaw in 2009 containing a clause “No person shall remain upon any part of the beach in deliberate view of others in such a state of undress as to cause offence.”
“Families don’t want their children being confronted by naked men and women. The rights of nudists to ‘hang loose’ should not be at the expense of families feeling embarrassed or offended. It is completely inappropriate for children to be confronted with naked adults wandering past them or sunbathing. It is not for families to ‘get out of the way’. The nudists should simply cover up.”
Family First is also calling on the government to amend the Crimes Act and Summary Offences Act so that the precedent to allow public nudity, set in past cases by liberal judges on events such as the ‘Boobs on Bikes’, can be overturned.
“There’s a place for nudity, but it is certainly not on our main streets or beaches which families and children use,” says Mr McCoskrie.
Bob McCoskrie – National Director Family First NZ