National Redress Scheme Update
March 2019 | News | Sam Burnett, Jon Cheung and Seak-King Huang
On 27 February 2019, the Commonwealth Department of Social Services announced that it will maintain a public list of institutions who have and who have not yet joined the National Redress Scheme for survivors of institutional child sexual abuse.
In making the announcement, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, Minister for Families and Social Services, said the publication ‘provides information and transparency for people who have experienced abuse and may be considering applying for redress.’
The publication of the list of institutions who are yet to join the Scheme follows a letter to institutions from the Prime Minister on 14 December 2018. In this letter, the Prime Minister indicated that he would publicly name the institutions which had not yet signed up to the Scheme. The letter also implied that Commonwealth financial commitments to such institutions may become contingent on their participation in the Scheme.
The National Redress Scheme commenced on 1 July 2018 in response to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse (the Royal Commission). It provides an opportunity for eligible survivors of institutional child sexual abuse to apply for redress where the responsible institution has joined the Scheme. Some of the key features of the Scheme include:
- the offer of a monetary payment of up to $150,000;
- counselling and psychological support; and
- a direct personal response from the responsible institution.
A large number of non-government institutions have opted-in to the Scheme since its commencement.
List of institutions yet to join
The list of institutions that are yet to join the National Redress Scheme has been compiled on the basis of those institutions identified during the Royal Commission. The list is not a complete list of those institutions who have not yet joined the Scheme. For instance, the list does not include the majority of sporting associations nor some large religious institutions.
Institutions have until 30 June 2020 to enter the National Redress Scheme.
Prolegis Lawyers has advised institutions in relation to child safety and professional standards and is also advising institutions on the arrangements to opt-in to the National Redress Scheme.