Royal Commission invites applications for Survivor Advisory Group; new forum launched

Image: Aaron Burden on Unsplash

The Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse in State Care and in the Care of Faith-based Institutions is seeking applications for a Survivor Advisory Group.

The deadline to apply is 31 March 2019.

The Survivor Advisory Group is one method the Commissioners will use to enable the voice of survivors to be heard and involved in the Inquiry. The Advisory Group will provide advice directly to Commissioners. It is expected that the Terms of Reference for the Survivor Advisory Group will be finalised at the first meeting.

The Advisory Group will meet at least four times per year in Auckland or Wellington. There may be other activities between meetings. The Inquiry will pay Advisory Group participants for their time and expertise, for reasonable expenses and for support to participate as needed. Appointments to the Advisory Group are for 18 months.

A brief Expression of Interest document explains what would be involved and how to apply. For more information see the Inquiry website.

For questions about the process or help with applying call the Inquiry on 0800 222 727 (phones are staffed from 10am to 4pm, Monday to Friday).

Other updates from the Inquiry

The Commissioners have published a short plain English version of the Terms of Reference for the Inquiry. This document will be translated into other languages. 

The Commissioners published an update of progress in February 2019. The update noted:

  • The Commissioners have agreed the four values of the Royal Commission will be: reciprocity and balance, independence and determination, transparency, and aroha
  • The Royal Commission has established a vision for the inquiry: “Transforming the way we, as a nation, care for children, young people and vulnerable adults in our communities.”
  • The Commissioners are meeting with stakeholders to gather feedback on how the inquiry should be run and what it should cover. They also plan to hold public events around the country in the near future. Details will be shared on the Inquiry website and Facebook page.
  • The Commissioners are developing a number of ways for people to have their say directly to Commissioners. This will include a private listening forum, public hearings, and round table discussions on specific themes.
  • The Commissioners are finalising decisions on the composition and roles of advisory groups.

To stay up to date, check the Inquiry website and Inquiry Facebook page.

New independent forum launched

A new independent forum, called the Royal Commission Forum, has been launched to promote justice for survivors of historic abuse in Aotearoa New Zealand with regard to the Royal Commission of Inquiry. The Royal Commission Forum brings together academics, non profit organisations and other stakeholders together.

This Forum website provides information about the Inquiry and links to support agencies. The Forum also publishes commentary on the work of the Royal Commission of Inquiry. The Forum is designed to enable everyone to talk about the activities of the Royal Commission of Inquiry. They welcome submissions for publication on their website. Members of the Forum include: Judith Aitken, Belinda Battley, Paora Moyle, Rosslyn Noonan, Khylee Quince, Elizabeth Stanley, Fleur Te Aho and Stephen Winter. Organisations affiliated with the Forum include CLAN Aotearoa/New Zealand and Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse.

More information

For background information about the Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse in State Care and in the Care of Faith-based Institutions │Te Kōmihana Karauna mō ngā Tūkino o Mua ki te Hunga i Tiakina e te Kāwanatanga i Tiakina hoki e ngā Whare o te Whakapono, see our previous news stories:

Terms of reference for inquiry into abuse in care finalised; panelists appointed

Royal Commission into Abuse in State Care launched and draft terms of reference released

Public feedback invited on Terms of Reference for Royal Commission of Inquiry into abuse

Prior to the launch of the Royal Commission, a team of academic and legal experts released findings from a survey of survivors and a proposed framework for the inquiry.

Related media

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Child, Youth and Family caregiver pleads not guilty to sexual, physical abuse charges, NZ Herald, 13.03.2019

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Child sexual abuse inquiry scope clarified, Stuff, 05.03.2019

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Child, Youth and Family caregiver faces raft of sexual, physical abuse charges, NZ Herald, 11.02.2019

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