Attributable to Law Council of Australia President Stuart Clark AM:
- The Law Council of Australia welcomes the Commonwealth Government’s commitment to lead the development of a national approach to redress for survivors of institutional child sexual abuse.
- The Law Council considers it vital that urgent consideration be given by the Commonwealth, States and Territories in the development of a nationally consistent approach to redress. Survivors of child sexual abuse have already waited too long for a national response to redress and there is still much to be done.
- The Law Council is of the view that in developing national principles for the redress scheme, it is imperative that the Commonwealth, States and Territories are established as the funders of last resort. This is necessary to ensure all survivors can obtain redress.
- Additionally, it is vital that provision be made for additional funding for legal aid commissions, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander legal services, family violence prevention legal services and appropriate community legal services to assist applicants in navigating the redress scheme.
- The Commonwealth, States and Territories should also consider the broader response to survivors of child sexual abuse, namely reforms to civil litigation identified by the Royal Commission. Limitation periods, vicarious liability and identifying defendants are just some of legal areas, according to the Royal Commission, which require reform.
- The Law Council stands ready to work with the Commonwealth, States, Territories, and other stakeholders, in developing and implementing these important initiatives. Recognising the urgent need for action, the Law Council looks forward to engaging with governments and the broader community at the earliest possible opportunity.
Anil Lambert (media) // M. 0416 426 722 // E. firstname.lastname@example.org // www.lawcouncil.asn.au