Public hearing to commence 16 September 2013

Public hearing to commence 16 September 2013

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse will hold a public hearing in Sydney on Monday 16 September 2013.

The public hearing will run for up to a week and will look at how organisations including Scouts Australia, Hunter Aboriginal Children’s Services and the then Department of Community Services responded to information and allegations concerning Steven Larkins, the former CEO of Hunter Aboriginal Children’s Services.

The public hearing will examine issues including:

  • how information was shared between the various organisations;
  • how the Working With Children Check was conducted and assessed; and
  • whether organisational factors may have influenced responses to allegations and information.

The Royal Commission has already released two Issues Papers related to these issues, one on the Working with Children Check, and one on Child Safe Institutions.

Royal Commission CEO Janette Dines said that it was important to remember that the Royal Commission has not been set up to examine individual cases of alleged abuse.

“The Royal Commission has been asked to look at where systems have failed children in the past and identify what institutions and government should do to better protect children in the future,” said Ms Dines.

Interested parties who wish to apply for leave to appear at the public hearing should make a written application via the Royal Commission’s website by 26 August.

The public can attend the hearing, or watch it live on the Royal Commission’s website. For more information, visit or phone 1800 099 340.

Media enquiries: (02) 8282 3966 or