Royal Commission public hearing starts on 21 October 2013

Royal Commission public hearing starts on 21 October 2013

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse will hold its second public hearing in Sydney, beginning on Monday 21 October 2013.

The second public hearing will look at the YMCA which employed Jonathan Lord as a child care worker. Mr Lord has since been convicted of crimes involving the sexual abuse of children, some of whom were in the care of YMCA.

Royal Commission CEO, Ms Janette Dines, said the hearing would examine policies and procedures around the recruitment, training and supervision of staff working in out of school hours’ care and the responses of YMCA and police to allegations of sexual abuse of children in the care of YMCA and in other circumstances.

“This case study will investigate what institutions offering before and after school care and vacation care can do to be child safe organisations.”

“It is also expected to provide insights into the practice of “grooming”, whereby an offender deliberately establishes an emotional connection with a child, the child’s family and others prior to a child being sexually abused,” she explained.

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

“This hearing will investigate where systems failed to create a child safe organisation in the context of out of school hours’ care. The Commission’s function is not to examine individual cases of alleged abuse,” said Ms Dines.

The public hearing will run for one to two weeks and will be streamed live to the public via webcast on the Royal Commission’s website at www.childabuseroyalcommission.gov.au.

For more information, visit www.childabuseroyalcommission.gov.au or phone 1800 099 340.

Media enquiries: (02) 8282 3966 or media@childabuseroyalcommision.gov.au.