November 12, 1994.
Grant 'Insane political correctness'
by Alan Samson
Selwyn MP David Carter yesterday attacked as "political correctness gone insane" a decision by the Lottery Grants Board to fund a group that publicises tales of ritual abuse and mock burials.
The End Ritual Abuse Society was formed in September by a parent who believed her son was ritually abused at the Christchurch Civic Childcare Centre.
The boy had told Social Welfare Department staff children were placed naked in a circle and kicked by adults wearing costumes.
He also reportedly told his mother that he had been buried in a coffin and splattered in blood.
The society asked for $28,000 to help fund an inner city office, a computer and a fulltime ritual abuse worker. The board agreed to provide $1300 for it to produce a newsletter.
"This is political correctness gone insane," Mr Carter said. "It seems if you've got any nutty theory that paints you as a victim, the Christchurch Lottery Grants Board will give you cash to swap stories of woe.
"I'm not knocking the real victims of abuse, but money to swap rumours about child sacrifices and burning pentagrams is a waste. This is a terrible waste of Lottery Grants Board money, which should have gone to a proper cause like Women's Refuge or real sexual abuse counselling."
The society is understood also to have applied for $6000 from a separate Internal Affairs Department fund but this was declined.
Mr Carter's criticisms were echoed by Victoria University sociology professor Mike Hill, who said believers in ritual abuse around the world had yet to produce corroborating evidence, "but I think it's good the issue is now in public."
The founder of the End Ritual Abuse Society could not be reached for comment last night.