AGREEMENT NEEDED ON REDRESS FOR SURVIVORS OF CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE
March 10, 2017
Federal Labor again calls on the Turnbull Government to secure an agreement with the state and territory governments and institutions for a national redress scheme for survivors of institutional child sexual abuse.
Justice Peter McClellan, Chair of the Royal Commission yesterday said that a national redress scheme was fundamental to acknowledging the suffering and ensuring ongoing care of victims. Justice McClellan stated:
“You can't leave a discussion with them (survivors of child sexual abuse) but with an understanding that a redress scheme of the type we've recommended is of fundamental importance."
The Turnbull Government has to get this right. Survivors have been waiting since September 2015, when the Royal Commission made special effort to release its report on a recommended national redress scheme. There was no response from the government until late 2016, and survivors are still facing significant uncertainty.
When the Minister for Social Services, Christian Porter announced the proposed redress scheme in November last year he admitted that not a single state, territory or institution had agreed to join the scheme.
Four months later there appears to be no signs of progress. No state or territory has agreed to join the Commonwealth’s opt-in redress scheme.
Mr Porter must say where the negotiations with the states and territories are up to.
Survivors deserve certainty and peace of mind that a national redress scheme will finally be delivered.
Labor will continue to pressure the Turnbull Government to get this right.
Labor understands that no amount of money can make up for the pain and trauma experienced by survivors of child sexual abuse.
But Labor knows that redress is an important step along the road to healing for survivors of child sexual abuse.
WEDNESDAY, 8 MARCH 2017