Almost 900 sexual abuse victims are currently “on hold” waiting for compensation because the institutes they suffered in have yet to sign on to the scheme.
Almost 900 sexual abuse victims are currently “on hold” waiting for compensation because the institutes they suffered in have yet to sign on to the scheme.

City school named and shamed over abuse delay

Queensland's most expensive private school, along with St Johns Ambulance and Swimming Australia, are among more than 100 institutions named and shamed today for failing to sign up to the national child sex abuse redress scheme.

It comes as Australia reels from Cardinal George Pell's conviction for sexually abusing two choirboys.

The groups - who are effectively stopping Australian survivors of horrific abuse from receiving compensation as they delay joining the scheme - were named in a list published online overnight.

Brisbane Grammar, Queensland's most expensive private school, where "a large number of students" suffered sexual abuse at the hands of paedophile teacher Kevin Lynch between 1973 and 1988, was named as one of 50 institutions that have yet to join the scheme and have given no indication they intend to.

Other organisations named in that category include Tennis NSW, St Johns Ambulance, Swimming Australia, Football NSW, Fairbridge Society and Jehovah's Witnesses, where more than 1000 children allegedly suffered sexual abuse according to case files provided to the royal commission.

Sydney private school Knox Grammar, where five teachers were convicted of child sex abuse crimes against students, was one of 35 institutes which have not yet joined the scheme but have indicated they will this year.

A further 25 institutions have indicated they intend to join the redress scheme before June 2020.

Cardinal George Pell has spent his first night in prison as he awaits sentencing. Picture: Michael Dodge/Getty Images
Cardinal George Pell has spent his first night in prison as he awaits sentencing. Picture: Michael Dodge/Getty Images

Meanwhile, survivors of abuse in the Christian Brothers and Marist Brothers institutes are now one step closer to getting redress after the two organisations signed onto the scheme overnight.

It comes as Cardinal Pell spent his first night in prison to await sentencing on March 13 after being found guilty of five child sex offence charges in December.

His conviction was only made public on Tuesday after a suppression order was lifted.

Almost 900 victims who have applied for redress so far are currently "on hold" waiting for compensation because the institutes they suffered in have yet to sign on to the scheme.

Other survivors are waiting for more institutes to join before they apply, a Department of Social Services official told a Senate estimates hearing last week.

It's expected up to 60,000 people in total could eventually apply for redress.

More than 100 institutions have been named and shamed today for failing to sign up to the national child sex abuse redress scheme.
More than 100 institutions have been named and shamed today for failing to sign up to the national child sex abuse redress scheme.

Social Services Minister Paul Fletcher told News Corp he expected that publicly listing their information would "focus the mind" of institutions still holding out.

"These institutions have had many months and the Australian government has been clear about our expectations," Mr Fletcher said.

"We will continue to regularly update these lists so that this information is known to survivors and known to the broader community."

Mr Fletcher said he found Cardinal Pell's conviction "troubling and shocking".

Social Services Minister Paul Fletcher. Picture: AAP
Social Services Minister Paul Fletcher. Picture: AAP

"As the Prime Minister said, what it does demonstrate to all of us is that nobody is above the law and the justice system applies to all Australians."

Just 51 survivors have received compensation since the national redress scheme opened in July out of a total of 2728 people to sign up.

They have received a total of $4 million redress so far with the average payment of about $79,035.

Some have received the maximum payment of $150,000.

Institutions were first warned they would be named and shamed for failing to sign up in December after state and federal ministers agreed to public reporting.

Since then, the number of victims who can have a claim processed has almost tripled to 927.

Department of Social Services secretary Kathryn Campbell wrote to institutions again last week warning them they would be publicly named.

Mr Fletcher said yesterday the Christian Brothers, Marist Brothers, and the Anglican Diocese of Adelaide had now signed onto the scheme, along with the Baptist Churches of Western Australia and Tasmania, Moore Theological College Council, and the St Andrew's House Corporation.

Visit the National Redress Scheme website to see the list: www.nationalredress.gov.au



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