Media Release: Urgent funding needed for services supporting child sexual abuse survivors

knowmore welcomes changes passed in Parliament on 20 March to allow survivors in jail to receive redress for sexual abuse they experienced as children but says inadequate funding for support services is undermining the National Redress Scheme.

‘The redress scheme is incredibly complex. We need adequate funding for support services so that survivors don’t have to navigate it alone,’ said Jackie Mead, CEO of knowmore.

‘We are pleased that the debates regarding this legislation have included such a strong focus on the voice of survivors. No child should suffer abuse. The Government has a responsibility to ensure that all survivors can access redress, including survivors in jail.’

Ms Mead says survivor support services like knowmore are preparing for an increase in calls from survivors in jail, who will be allowed to apply for redress in the coming weeks.

‘We estimate there are many thousands of survivors in jail, who will now be eligible to apply for redress. Without more funding, it will be impossible for support services to meet the increased demand.’

A major review of the National Redress Scheme in 2021 expressed ‘significant and immediate concern’ for survivors in jail, noting the injustice of their exclusion as survivors are overrepresented in jail.

10% of survivors who spoke to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in private sessions were in jail at the time.

The changes that passed the Parliament are welcomed by many survivors of child sexual abuse and survivor support services.

knowmore is a community legal centre that provides free, independent legal advice and multidisciplinary support for survivors of child sexual abuse.

For further information on this topic CEO Jackie Mead (0417 349 254) is available for comment. For any additional media interviews please contact media officer Philippa Hambling on 0418 232 906 or email via