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Commission of Inquiry Recommendations


Cassy O'Connor MP

Cassy O'Connor MP  -  Thursday, 3 December 2020

Tags: Commission of Inquiry, Child Abuse

Ms O'CONNOR question to PREMIER, Mr GUTWEIN

In the face of deeply confronting evidence of systemic historic and current harm to children and young people, you made the right decision to establish a commission of inquiry. As it was with the COVID-19 response, the Greens are determined to thoughtfully and responsibly support the work of the inquiry and, to the greatest extent possible, remove the politics in the best interests of survivors, their families, and all Tasmania's children and young people.

This inquiry needs tri-partisan backing, so I strongly encourage you to work with Opposition and crossbench parties and members on the terms of reference. The commission of inquiry will be painful for many. It will uncover dark and terrible truths, give voice to people who have suffered their trauma in silence, and it will lay bare the failings of successive governments to adequately protect children and young people. It will also make recommendations for change.

Will you commit today to implementing all the recommendations of the inquiry no matter how difficult or costly for Government so we can be sure its legacy is a truly child-safe Tasmania.

 

ANSWER

Madam Speaker, I thank the Leader of the Greens for her question. I will start with the nub: whether we will commit to all of the inquiry's recommendations. On balance, my view would be that of course we will. All of us would need to reserve the right to understand what those recommendations are.

This is going to be difficult. We all understand this is going to be uncomfortable. We will do this once, we will do this right, and we will make certain that kids in this state have the best protections in place. I know this will be challenging. This will be one of the most difficult moments that Tasmania will ever have to face.

We have come through a pandemic. Now we go into a second period where all of us are going to be challenged. It would be my intention that the recommendations, however difficult they may be, would be implemented. We are dealing with the protections and safety of our kids and of the next generation of Tasmanians. There will be things that come out of this commission of inquiry that will shock us. We need to prepare ourselves for that. We need to steel ourselves for this journey, but we will do this once, we will do this right, we will get the job done, and we will improve protections for our children.