The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse uncovered tragic and widespread abuse of children who were in the care of government and non-government institutions. Children reporting abuse were not believed and their allegations were ignored.
We acknowledge the findings of historical abuse within Victorian Government institutions and the ongoing psychological and physical harm suffered by survivors.
As part of the inquiry, survivors shared stories of the profound trauma they suffered while in the care of government and non-government institutions and spoke of the extent to which this trauma impacted their lives as children and into adulthood. We acknowledge your strength, resilience and courage and we thank you for your bravery in coming forward to make sure the abuse of children was brought to light.
It is thanks to the courage of survivors of historical child sexual abuse that the Royal Commission was able to do its important work and we acknowledge your vital contribution.
The Victorian Government is taking responsibility to make sure no child is failed again and the wrongs of the past are never repeated. We are also making sure the needs of survivors are treated with the priority and importance they deserve.
As well as making important recommendations for governments and institutions, the Royal Commission provided essential support for survivors of abuse in Australia so their voices could be heard. We welcome the release of the Final Report and thank the Royal Commission for its commitment and dedication in these important tasks.
We are continually working to improve the ways we protect children, and the recommendations of the Royal Commission will be instrumental in guiding laws and practice to better protect children from abuse.
This includes building cultures across the community that give children and young people a voice, empower them to raise concerns, and making sure that our responses to their concerns are effective and appropriate.
We are committed to working with other jurisdictions to protect all children from abuse and implement more than 50 recommendations requiring intergovernmental collaboration.
The Victorian Government is consulting with the Australian Government and state and territory governments to progress these recommendations. The Victorian Government is determined to make sure these failures to protect children never happen again and survivors are given the care and support they need. Our response to the Royal Commission reflects these commitments.
For the next five years, the Victorian Government will report annually on its progress in building better protections for children.