Survivors are finally being listened to. The commission on child abuse is doing a great job

The Guardian

Helen Davidson, Thursday 28 August 2014

Writing in Spectator this month, Christopher Akehurst managed to pull together no facts and a lot of ignorance in Touting for abuse, an attack on the royal commission into institutional responses to child sexual abuse.

Akehurst is quite alone with this “the royal commission is a stunt” rhetoric. No one who understands anything about the work of the commission would dare to hold that view any longer, although some did when the commission was first announced. Among the many royal commissions and inquiries currently running, this one is unique in the overwhelming support for both its purpose and its conduct.

Akehurst’s view is that the commission is a conspiratorial witch hunt out to bash the Roman Catholic church launched by former prime minister Julia Gillard as a last ditch attempt at creating a legacy. His main argument is that two years on, the commission is running out of victims and has to resort to telemarketing to find some.

There are many points in the Spectator article which can simply be answered by reading the commission’s terms of reference, and more still that I could tear apart for inaccuracy, but I want to focus on this last claim.

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