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Greens Commit to Redress Scheme for Victims of Institutional Child Abuse

Cassy O'Connor MP  -  Friday, 9 February 2018

Tags: National Redress Scheme, Child Abuse, Royal Commission

Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens’ Leader

The Premier's refusal to commit to the national redress scheme for victims of past sexual abuse, along with Labor's silence on the issue, are a slap in the face to the estimated 1,750 Tasmanian survivors who would be eligible under the scheme.

The National Redress Scheme was a key recommendation of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, and now has the commitment of the Federal Government to commence on 1 July next year.

For too many years, survivors of child abuse have suffered in silence, and the many victims have not been able to seek the acknowledgement, justice and compensation they deserve.

The Greens are committed to funding the State's contribution to the scheme, estimated at $13 million over the next decade.*

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is committed to redress for the victims of abuse, yet his Tasmanian counterpart refuses to commit.

While Labor have been conspicuously quiet, the State Liberal Leader pointed to the previous compensation scheme for victims of child abuse in State care. The National Redress Scheme is a separate issue, it seeks help to heal and compensate Tasmanian victims of child abuse in institutional settings such as church and charitable organisations, not State care.

It is estimated around 1,750 Tasmanians who still carry the scars of their abuse at the hands of churches and charitable institutions would be eligible to seek redress under a national scheme. The Greens policy is in line with the recommendations and costings of the Royal Commission.

Will Hodgman’s refusal to commit to funding the State’s contribution of the Redress Scheme is heartless. Tasmanian survivors of childhood sexual abuse have been denied justice and let down enough.  They have suffered enough.

This is about justice for Tasmanians who suffered lifelong harm at the hands of people who abused their trust. Both the Liberals and Labor must take a commitment to the National Redress Scheme to the State election.