Australia to compensate victims of sex abuse in institutions

Canberra, Nov 4 (IANS) The Australian government on Friday announced compensation of $115,200 to victims of sex abuse in public and religious institutions of the country.

The compensation is part of a federal government plan that will be implemented from 2018 onwards, and the state governments and religious institutions too can be a part of it, said the Ministry of Social Services and the attorney general’s department in a statement.

The government recognises that many of the survivors or victims were abused sexually as minors in institutions that might have been run by the government, or the church or charities, said the statement.

Social services minister Christian Porter said an independent assessment council will be created to supervise the implementation of the programme, which also includes psychological counselling, Efe news reported.

In 2012, Australia created a commission to investigate the response of authorities to sexual abuse of minors committed in social, public, military and religious institutions.

Last year, the commission published a report with 99 recommendations regarding attention and care of the victims.

The commission’s proposal advocated for the plan to be financed by the institutions where the abuses were committed or by the governments if they took place in public premises or when non-governmental institutions had disappeared.