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Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse

The findings of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse highlighted serious failings in the way institutions protect children and young people, and deal with reports of abuse when they occur. 

The Government of South Australia is committed to taking action to reduce the risk of institutional child sexual abuse and better support victims and survivors. 

The government is working to bring together these findings with previous royal commissions and inquiries to develop a holistic, evidence-based strategy for reform.

The Royal Commission delivered 409 recommendations, of which 256 are for the Government of South Australia to action. A snapshot of the government's progress in implementing the recommendations is shown below. 

2018 Annual Report

The first annual report on the Government of South Australia's progress on implementing the Royal Commission's recommendations was published on 4 December 2018. 

Key highlights in the report

  • Delivering national and state apologies to victims and survivors of institutional child sexual abuse.
  • Formalising South Australia's participation in the National Redress Scheme.
  • Removing time limits to seek compensation for people who have experienced child abuse. 
  • Establishing SAPOL's Public Protection Branch to manage high-risk offenders and respond to the needs of victims.
  • Creating the new role of Aboriginal Commissioner for Children and Young People. 
  • Bringing new child safety laws into effect to support the voice of the child and improve experiences in out-of-home care.
  • Implementing mandatory reporting requirements for ministers of religion who receive information through a confession. 
June 2018 - South Australia's response to the Royal Commission

On 14 June 2018, the Government of South Australia released its response to the Final Report of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. The government also published updates on the 3 previous reports of the Royal Commission.

Final Report

Working with children checks

Criminal justice

Redress and civil litigation

About the Royal Commission

Starting in 2013, the Royal Commission into Institutional responses to Child Sexual Abuse worked tirelessly to expose the scope of child sexual abuse in institutions across Australia. Six commissioners conducted the 5-year inquiry using a trauma-informed approach, including private sessions, public hearings and issues papers. 

The inquiry had a national focus and looked at a range of institutional contexts, such as out-of-home care, youth justice facilities, sporting and other clubs, religious organisations, schools and charities. 

Thousands of people bravely came forward to tell the Royal Commission about the abuse perpetrated against them. 

Royal Commission Recommendations

The Royal Commission delivered 409 recommendations through 4 staged reports. Of the 409 recommendations, 256 are for the Government of South Australia to action. 

Release dateReport titleTotal number of recommendationsGovernment of South Australia recommendations
July 2015Working with Children Checks Report3634
September 2015Redress and Civil Litigation Report9935
August 2017Criminal Justice Report8583
December 2017Final Report189104
Total409256

How will the Royal Commission recommendations be implemented?

Each recommendation from the Royal Commission that is the responsibility of the Government of South Australia has been allocated to a government agency. These agencies are responsible for implementing accepted recommendations and ensuring the intent of each recommendation is met at a local level. 

The Department for Child Protection will manage reporting and cross-government coordination. The government will also continue to work with its interstate and federal colleagues on national approaches to combat child sexual abuse. 

Many recommendations also apply to religious and other non-government institutions. These organisations must respond to the Royal Commission to ensure children are better protected in all situations. 

Contact

Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse

EmailRCIRCSAresponseSA [at] sa.gov.au