Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull addresses the Seniors Forum at the Sandstone Point Hotel alongside LNP Candidate for Longman, Trevor Ruthenberg, in Brisbane, Thursday, June 7, 2018.
Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull addresses the Seniors Forum at the Sandstone Point Hotel alongside LNP Candidate for Longman, Trevor Ruthenberg, in Brisbane, Thursday, June 7, 2018.

National apology for victims of child sex abuse

PRIME Minister Malcolm Turnbull will deliver a national apology to the survivors, victims and families of institutional child sexual abuse on October 22.

The Federal Government today revealed its formal response to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse's final report released in December.

Mr Turnbull said 104 of the Royal Commission's 122 recommendations, which were directed wholly or partly at the Commonwealth, have been accepted.

The remaining 18 recommendations, which generally require coordination with state or local authorities, require more work but haven't been rejected. In total the Royal Commission delivered 409 recommendations.

A National Redress Scheme will also be set up and it's hoped it will be running by July 1 after the Western Australian government agreed to participate.

The maximum payment will be $150,000, lower than the $200,000 the Royal Commission recommended but the average payment will be $11,000 higher than recommended at $76,000.

Attorney-General Christian Porter said the scheme was meant to be "non-litigious" so there will be low standards of evidence, mainly based around a paper application, required to prove the abuse.

"It's relatively low … to make sure that they're dealt with in a way that doesn't re-traumatise survivors," he said.

Social Services Minister Dan Tehan said 93 per cent of survivors were expected to be covered by the scheme and it's hoped the Senate will approve it in the next fortnight.

Mr Turnbull said everyone in Australia had a vested interest in protecting the safety of each other's children.

"They are our future and we owe it to them," he said.

"We owe it to them not to turn a blind eye to abuse … and we certainly owe it to them to ensure their safety is put first."

A national office for child safety is also expected to be set up in the Social Services Department and to commence from July 1 to progress a national framework for child safety and develop principles for child-safe organisations.

Federal minister David Gillespie has been given responsibility for children's policy issues.

Francis Sullivan (left), chief executive of the Catholic Church's Truth, Justice and Healing Council with Father Brian Lucas (right) former general secretary of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, leaves Governor Macquarie Tower in Sydney with his lawyer after appearing on the stand at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Picture: Britta Campion/The Aus
Francis Sullivan (left), chief executive of the Catholic Church's Truth, Justice and Healing Council with Father Brian Lucas (right) former general secretary of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference, leaves Governor Macquarie Tower in Sydney with his lawyer after appearing on the stand at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Picture: Britta Campion/The Aus

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