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SNAICC and Life Without Barriers - Response to Opposition Leader Claims

[by Tabatha Feher]


Image: ABC

"Sexual abuse is a really serious crime, which has a devastating impact on children, families
and communities — this is not a political football.

“If Mr Dutton, any politician, or any community member has evidence about sexual abuse of
children then the mandatory process is to make a report to the authorities.

“The claims of ‘rampant’ abuse fly in the face of evidence. Data from Territory Families show
there has been no escalation in investigations of sexual abuse or exploitation.

“SNAICC invites Mr Dutton and Senator Price to meet with SNAICC and community members
for a considered, evidence-based discussion of the issue of child sexual abuse and the over
representation of Aboriginal children in the child protection system. Despite an invitation
last year, they have never approached SNAICC for more information or to hear about
community-led solutions.

“Mr Dutton was a member of the Abbott Cabinet that cut more than $500 million in funding
to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander services, and another nearly $80 million to Aboriginal
and Child Family Centres that supported our vulnerable children and families.

“Aboriginal children are over-represented in the child protection system and this is an
increasing trend. The reality is our children are removed from family at increasing and
unacceptable rates, not because they are not loved but because of poverty, systemic racism
and a lack of cultural-appropriate support to vulnerable families.

“Aboriginal communities and families have the solutions. We have more than 60 thousand
years experience in successfully raising children to be strong and thriving. Listen to our
voices and our expertise.”


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