- National Redress Scheme for Institutional Child Sexual Abuse (Commonwealth Powers) Act 2018 passes State Parliament
Legislation enabling Western Australian survivors of historical child sexual abuse to seek compensation under the National Redress Scheme (the Scheme) has passed through the State Parliament.
Participation in the scheme gives survivors a simpler and streamlined alternative to pursuing civil litigation through the courts, after the McGowan Government removed the statutory limitation period for child sexual abuse actions earlier this year.
The passage of the National Redress Scheme for Institutional Child Sexual Abuse (Commonwealth Powers) Act 2018 means that the WA Government’s participation in the scheme will begin, and applications received can be assessed, from January 1, 2019.
As noted by Attorney General John Quigley:
“In June this year, the McGowan Government announced it would sign up to the National Redress Scheme, with a commencement date of January 1, 2019.
“WA was the last State to sign up to the scheme, because the McGowan Government wanted to ensure that the policies under the scheme were fair and equitable for all Western Australian survivors of child sexual abuse.
“The passage of this legislation was crucial because without it, the State Government and WA-based non-government institutions could not join the scheme.
“The WA Government’s participation will contribute to the scheme being a truly national scheme.
“The McGowan Government has worked constructively with all members of Parliament to ensure the expedient passage of this legislation. I am pleased that the legislation has passed with minor amendments.
“Survivors have the option of going down the path of civil litigation under the Civil Liability Legislation Amendment (Child Sexual Abuse Actions) Act 2018 or, alternatively, under the scheme.
“Redress provides Western Australians who have experienced institutional child sexual abuse with an easier, more supportive and less traumatic alternative to pursuing civil litigation through the courts, which can be costly and time consuming.
“The scheme also provides access to free specialist legal support services and financial counselling, making it a much less onerous and traumatic process.”
Attorney General’s office – 6552 6800