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National apology to institutional child sexual abuse victims to include museum, research centre announcement


Prime Minister Scott Morrison Photo: Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s address in the House of Representatives will be televised around the nation. (ABC News)

A museum and research centre will be announced as part of the national apology to victims and survivors of institutional child sexual abuse to “ensure the nation does not forget the untold horrors they experienced”.

Key points:

  • The museum will include a memorial which will be a “quiet place of reflection”
  • A research centre will study the impacts of child sexual abuse and provide training
  • The Government will announce its progress on the royal commission recommendations each year

In a televised address in the House of Representatives on Monday, Prime Minister Scott Morrison will pledge that the Government “will work with survivor groups to ensure their stories are recorded and the history is displayed”.

The museum and research centre are part of a raft of announcements Mr Morrison is expected to make, and form part of the Government’s response to the recommendations of the five-year Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

Cheryl Edwardes, the chairwoman of the National Apology Reference Group which held months of consultation with survivors around the country, told the ABC the museum would include a memorial.

Cheryl Edwardes poses for a picture outdoors wearing a red jacket and black blouse. Photo: Cheryl Edwardes said there was “overwhelming support” around the country for a memorial and museum. (ABC News: Eliza Laschon)

“The memorial is a quiet place of reflection, a calming place, and this can be done in conjunction with a museum where the stories are held and can be told over and over again for future generations so that no one forgets what happened to make sure it never happens again,” she said.

If you or anyone you know needs help:

Another aspect of the apology will include an undertaking to fund a national research centre to understand the impacts of child sexual abuse, as well as offering support and guiding “best practice for training and other services.”

A centre of research excellence with a focus on child sexual abuse was one of the recommendations of the royal commission.

Craig Hughes-Cashmore, chief executive of Survivors and Mates Support Network (SAMSN), said the announcements were “hugely significant” and would guarantees the legacy of the royal commission.

“Anyone who has been impacted by child sexual abuse will know where to go for for specialist help,” he said.

“I would hope it would have the public recognition of Beyond Blue or Lifeline and the reputation of the Royal Flying Doctors.”

The apology speech will also include a commitment that the Prime Minister will report every year for the next five years on the progress of each the royal commission’s recommendations.



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