- First annual progress report demonstrates the McGowan Government's commitment to responding to the national Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse
- WA report shows work has either commenced or has been completed on almost 95 per cent of the recommendations
- Report identifies 13 priority areas of work to be addressed in 2019-20
The McGowan Government's first annual progress report on the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse (the Royal Commission) shows that work has either commenced or has been completed on almost 95 per cent of the recommendations.
Child Protection Minister Simone McGurk released the report today, which demonstrates the Government's commitment to implementing the recommendations of the Royal Commission.
The report shows that of the 310 recommendations applicable to the Western Australian Government, 108 of the recommendations have been completed and work is progressing on a further 186.
The State Government has strongly supported the work of the Royal Commission. Following the Royal Commission, WA was the first State to offer a formal apology to survivors of institutional child sexual abuse.
Other achievements highlighted in the report include:
- The passing of the Civil Liability Legislation Amendment (Child Sexual Abuse Actions) Act 2018 to allow people to pursue civil action through the courts;
- Joining the National Redress Scheme following extensive consultation with the Commonwealth; and
- Passing the National Redress Scheme for Institutional Child Sexual Abuse (Commonwealth Powers) Act 2018 to allow processing of redress applications from January 1, 2019.
Implementing the recommendations of the Royal Commission is expected to be a five to 10-year program of reform to make Western Australia a safer place for all children.
Under the implementation framework, government will progress initiatives across the three key action areas - preventing future abuse; responding swiftly and effectively to abuse if it occurs; and addressing past abuse.
The report also outlines 13 priority areas of work for 2019-20 which include the introduction of a new criminal offence for institutions that fail to report suspected abuse; supporting institutions to implement child safe standards; and improving working with children check screening.
The State Government has committed to publically report on progress annually for five years.
A copy of the 2018 annual progress report is available at http://www.dpc.wa.gov.au/childabuseroyalcommission
Comments attributed to Child Protection Minister Simone McGurk:
"The community has a right to expect that our children are safe, especially within the institutions entrusted to protect, educate, care for and nurture them.
"The Royal Commission uncovered where institutions - Government and non-government - have failed to meet this expectation.
"The reforms being implemented across government will ensure a safer WA for all children.
"I am pleased that work is progressing on almost 95 per cent of the recommendations.
"The McGowan Government is committed to honouring the work of the Royal Commission by responding to historical abuse that has occurred, preventing further abuse from happening, and ensuring a swift response to abuse should it occur again."
Minister's office - 6552 6600