Don’t ignore abuse victims on national day
leaders should spare a moment on Australia Day to think about helping child abuse survivors get a new start, an advocacy group says.
Two million Australian adults who have experienced child abuse need more support to live healthy lives, Adults Surviving Child Abuse (ASCA) says.
“As the country comes together to honour and reflect on its annual achievements, ASCA is calling on governments and policy makers to prioritise support for the more than two million adult Australians who have experienced child abuse in all its forms,” the group said.
“Just like our new citizens, many of these Australians are working towards living healthy and happy lives. The good news is, a better life is possible,” Dr
Cathy Kezelman of ASCA said.
“But change needs to be led by the leaders of our community.
She said health services needed the right tools to provide proper care for adults who often suffered in silence from the trauma of childhood abuse.
With the right support, they could regain control of their lives and make an important contribution to society, the doctor said.
She said more than two million Australian adults had experienced some form of child abuse, and the annual cost to the country of child abuse and neglect had been estimated at $4 billion.
Professor Donna Cross, Western Australia’s nominee for Australian of the Year, has said problems children face in early life such as abuse and bullying can lead to alcohol and drug abuse and violence in adulthood.