posted on July 02, 2018 11:59
The National Redress Scheme to support people who were sexually abused as children while in the care of an institution starts on 1 July 2018 and will run for 10 years. The Scheme has been created in response to some of the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
The approach is based on the belief that institutions must be held accountable for sexual abuse of children for whom they were responsible. People who were sexually abused in the care of institutions will be able to apply for any or all of the following three components, provided the institution in which they were abused has opted into the scheme and is ‘participating’.
The three components of redress are:
· access to counselling and psychological care;
· acknowledgement and recognition for people who want it, through a direct personal response from the institution responsible for the abuse; and
· a monetary payment.
Redress is a way of providing acknowledgment and support to people who were sexually abused in the care of institutions. Redress is an alternative to seeking compensation or damages through the courts. People who receive redress from an institution are unable to seek compensation from the same institution, as well.
While all the states and territories have indicated that they will participate in the scheme, and many non-government organisations – churches and charities have also opted in, not all the relevant legislation will have been passed by July 1 and not all non-government institutions have opted in. It is hoped that more will join over time.
The National Redress website www.nationalredress.gov.au will list all the institutions which are participating in the scheme. It will also provide a lot of additional information, access to application forms and information about support services, legal advisory services and financial advisory services.
Support services including Blue Knot Foundation have been briefed around the Scheme, how it can be accessed and what a person can reasonably expect through the process of applying and potentially accepting an offer of redress.
If you are considering applying for redress, you might wish to seek support from a friend, family member or support service as the process of applying for redress may be challenging as it is asking you about the abuse you experienced as a child. You may also wish to seek free advice through the legal advisory service, knowmore or financial counselling from an independent financial counsellor.
For more information visit www.nationalredress.gov.au or call 1800 737 377 between 8 am and 5 pm Monday to Friday AEST.