A new phone app designed to make it easier for young people in out-of-home care to get support is being trialled as part of the State Government’s response to the national Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
Child Protection Minister Simone McGurk announced details of the new ‘MyView’ mobile app today, as she released the McGowan Government’s second annual progress report on the Royal Commission’s recommendations.
The report shows that work has either commenced or been completed on more than 95 per cent of the recommendations.
Of the 310 recommendations applicable to the Western Australian Government, 125 have now been completed, with a further 178 progressing. The remaining seven recommendations require adaption of linked legislation or progress on other recommendations.
The State Government has continued its strong support of the work of the Royal Commission in 2019 by strengthening criminal law responses to child sexual abuse and improving access to support for children in out of home care.
It also introduced changes to the Children and Community Services Act 2004 to require ministers of religion to report child sexual abuse, with mandatory reporting extended to information gained during confession.
With more than 5,300 children and young people in out-of-home care in WA, the State Government is trialling a ‘MyView’ phone app that aims to improve their access to support and services.
Commissioned by the Advocate for Children in Care and developed in consultation with young adults who have been in care, the app provides access to important information, emergency help and direct contact with case workers, advocacy and complaints services.
The Minister said the six-month trial, which will be made available to 300 young people in care across the State, was an important step in ensuring the safety of children was always paramount.
The 2019 annual progress report is available at: https://www.wa.gov.au/government/publications/progress-report-2019-healing-past-hurts-protecting-children-now-preventing-further-harm
As stated by Child Protection Minister Simone McGurk:
“The McGowan Government remains strongly committed to addressing the recommendations handed down in the 2017 Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
“We are working hard to heal past hurts, protect children now and prevent further harm. The State-wide implementation of the ‘MyView’ pilot is a practical example of this commitment.
“While there is still work to be done, more than 95 per cent of the 310 applicable recommendations to Western Australia have either been completed or are currently progressing.
“The Royal Commission noted that a child-focused complaints process is an important strategy for helping children and others in institutions to raise and discuss concerns and make complaints.
“The ‘MyView’ app aims to provide a simple tool that empowers young people in out-of-home care with access to direct information and a resource that ensures that their voices are heard.”