Survivors of institutional child sexual abuse will get more assistance from the Labor Government to access the National Redress Scheme with Minister for Social Services Amanda Rishworth today announcing grant funding of over $39.7 million to boost support services.
Minister Rishworth said Redress Support Services are vital to addressing the challenges and barriers victims and survivors of child sexual abuse face throughout their redress journey.
The grant funding over two years to 2023-24 will boost services to people applying for the National Redress Scheme from 1 July 2022.
More than 15,000 people have accessed support from RSS in the first 3.5 years of the Scheme.
“Survivors of institutional child sexual abuse have waited a long time for the acknowledgement of the harm caused to them and they deserve our support,” Minister Rishworth said.
“For many survivors, their redress application is the first time they’ve told anyone about what happened to them. Additional funding for support services will help them get through this difficult time and ease their journey.”
People with a disability, Indigenous Australians in remote areas and those who were abused in smaller or lesser-known institutions will make up a growing number of applicants to the Scheme.
Applicants of the Scheme have access to free, trauma-informed and culturally appropriate support to help them understand the Redress Scheme, work through the application process and access the other community supports that they need.
The expansion of Redress Support Services will improve support available to people with disability, First Nations people, and those within diverse communities.
“Given the importance of Redress Support Services, it is vital that we give funding to candidates who have demonstrated they will deliver the best outcomes to participants,” Minister Rishworth said.
“We are ensuring service providers better respond to the emerging needs of the Scheme, and addressing the gaps to deliver better outcomes for survivors.”
“Over the coming months, my department will work with any unsuccessful current providers and smoothly transition continuing clients to alternative providers in their area to receive the emotional and practical support they need to engage with the Scheme,” Minister Rishworth said.
Redress Support Services are available in every state and territory and provide free, confidential, practical and emotional support to people before, during and after they apply for redress. Free legal and financial counselling support is also offered by knowmore.
The successful applicants include 28 organisations that are existing Redress Support Services who will continue or expand their good work.
Fifteen new organisations will commence delivering Redress Support Services from 1 July 2022, including at least one new provider in each state and territory.
Further information about Redress Support Services is available on the website: www.nationalredress.gov.au/support