Families Australia: comments on The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse consultation paper on institutional responses to child sexual abuse in out-of-home care

Summary

Families Australia welcomes the Royal Commission’s focus on child sexual abuse in Out-of-Home Care and the opportunity to respond to the Consultation Paper: Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in Out-of-Home Care.

Families Australia congratulates the Royal Commission on its extensive analysis of institutional responses to child sexual abuse in Out-of-Home Care (OOHC).

Our submission is supportive of the proposed solutions to address the problems identified within the consultation paper.

Families Australia strongly recommends that the proposed solutions be progressed through the existing National Framework for Protecting Australia’s Children 2009-2020 (the National Framework).[1]

The National Framework provides the Royal Commission with a unique opportunity to build on the commitment of NGOs, the Commonwealth Government and State and Territory Governments to work together to improve the safety and wellbeing of children.

Building alternate implementation processes and mechanisms would further severely challenge an already stretched sector. Implementation of the National Framework’s Third Action Plan 2015-2018 includes reform areas covered in this consultation paper and has the flexibility to be informed and shaped by recommendations from the Royal Commission.

The Third Action Plan includes a strong early intervention focus. This intervention is not only early in a child’s life but also when intervention is required, such as at life stages, leaving OOHC and creating safe environments for children and young people.

Families Australia supports the individual submissions made by its member organisations in response to this Consultation Paper. In these submissions we recognise the many years of experience, expertise and commitment to the safety and wellbeing of children.

[1] Commonwealth of Australia (2009). The National Framework for Protecting Australia’s Children 2009-2020. Canberra, ACT.

Full submission available here.