In response to this landmark event, I have written the following statement:
I am looking forward to representing many victims/survivors of institutional child sexual abuse within the Australian Jewish community, and their families at the Government’s National Apology in Canberra. My thoughts will also be with those children who were sexually abused overseas due to Australian Jewish institutions' negligence. This has been a very difficult journey for many of us – hopefully, this landmark Government apology will have its desired effect: to assist in the ongoing healing process of the many who have been impacted by the scourge of child sexual abuse within institutions
It is important to emphasise that institutions should not see this apology as absolving them of their responsibilities. Nor should these institutions think that an apology, compensation or other forms of redress on their part will suffice. These institutions have often caused life-long, irreparable damage to so many children under their care. They have also caused significant damage to the families of these victims. It will take a lifetime to try to heal and repair the damage.
Subsequent to the Apology, the Government should ensure that the Royal Commission recommendations are fully implemented by institutions. While the Apology is meaningful to many, we all expect institutions to be held to full account both for the past and in the future. In this context, I would like to acknowledge that some victims/survivors have decided to boycott this National Apology as the Government has not fully implemented the Royal Commission recommendations. This is a personal decision that must be acknowledged and respected.
While at the National Apology event, I will also think of the vast majority of child sexual abuse victims/survivors within our society; those who were sexually abused within the institution of family.
I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate all concerned in holding the National Apology, especially to former Prime Minister Julia Gillard who launched the Royal Commission, and the Commission staff.
This is a good time to try to heal.