Wealthy philanthropist Owen Glenn, frustrated at a lack of political action on growing domestic violence and child abuse, is funding an independent inquiry.
Mr Glenn said that while the government believed it was doing enough, he was alarmed at the horrific statistics.
The Glenn Inquiry will be funded via his family foundation and $80 million that in July he tagged for improving the lives of families and children in New Zealand.
At the time he also launched an $8 million pilot programme in Otara, south Auckland.
"This issue is too important to ignore," he said.
It would not be limited to examining the problem and making recommendations for others to consider and would produce an evidence-based blueprint for the future - a model that could set New Zealand as a world leader in addressing child abuse and domestic violence, he said.
"That is my aim and I'm committed to achieving it."
An inquiry panel of three or four people will be appointed, with former Social Development Ministry family violence programme director Ruth Herbert as leader.
Dame Catherine Tizard has agreed to be the inquiry's patron. She said addressing the issues would require sustained effort over several generations.
"We cannot afford for these issues to be treated as political footballs with action depending on the priorities of the party or parties that are in government at any one time. This issue is vital for us as a country, which is why I've agreed to be involved."
Mr Glenn said he was particularly keen to ensure survivors of child abuse and domestic violence were given a voice."The inquiry panel needs to hear their stories to learn about areas where the system response is failing to ensure victim safety and perpetrator accountability."
Should police officers accept fast food discounts?Vote
Copyright © 2013 Yahoo! New Zealand
All rights reserved.
Select your region to see news and weather for your area.