Peter Dutton dismissed many of the ‘Nauru files’, including those documenting sexual assault, as ‘false allegations in an attempt to get to Australia’.
Peter Dutton’s comments reinforced historically ingrained ideas about sexual assault victims as being 'unreliable' or 'untrustworthy'.
With attendance at mass continuing to flag, the Catholic bishops' influence has waned with it.
The Catholic bishops have exhorted Australians to cast a "vote for the voiceless", but it is doubtful that their plea will be paid much heed – by politicians or the public.
The last census revealed that just over 60% of Australians identified as Christian, but only one in seven of those attended church regularly.
Church affiliation and attendance is on the wane in Australia – a trend that is unlikely to be reversed be the recent slew of sex abuse scandals.
George Pell gave four days of evidence to the royal commission via video link from Rome.
One of the most important lessons we have learnt from George Pell’s royal commission appearance is the Catholic Church was – and still is – in a state of denial over child sexual abuse.
George Pell’s evidence, which implied that children’s complaints of abuse were widely disbelieved ‘back then’, overlooks the long history of successful prosecutions.
George Pell told the royal commission into child sex abuse the Catholic Church was predisposed not to believe children's complaints. But, when abuse was reported, police and the courts believed them.
Paul Millar/AAP Image
Soaring community outrage over the issue of child sexual abuse was this week fanned by a Tim Minchin song calling for Cardinal George Pell to return home to Australia to give evidence to the royal commission.
Tim Minchin’s song-craft is direct yet sophisticated, and artfully constructed.
AAP Image/Dean Lewins
Tim Minchin’s latest musical offering, Come Home Cardinal Pell, is provoking strong reactions because of its blunt and direct message to Cardinal George Pell. But in terms of song-craft, it's a winner.
Nominated for six Oscars including Best Picture, Spotlight has won over critics with its compelling story and strong cast featuring Rachel McAdams, Michael Keaton and Mark Ruffalo.
Entertainment One Films Australia
If you haven't seen Oscar winner Spotlight yet, go. It tells the true story of how decades of abuse in one city was finally uncovered - followed by revelations worldwide, including in my home town.
Some who survived abuse as children have waited a lifetime to be heard, and the royal commission has given people like John Ellis that opportunity.
The silencing of children has as long a history as child abuse itself. It is why we need royal commissions, books, and now a play: to allow children to tell us the truth of what was done to them.
Outlining a redress framework for survivors was a priority for the royal commission.
The royal commission has made a convincing case for a national scheme for redress: it is more prudent in terms of economies of scale, and more fair and equitable to survivors.
Former Prisoner star Maggie Kirkpatrick was found guilty of a charge of child sex abuse dating back to the 1980s.
Many factors are at play in enabling or constraining a child to speak directly about abuse and bringing that complaint to the attention of the authorities.
The royal commission is committed to hearing from children and young people directly.
Only when adults and institutions hear from children and young people directly, take their views and ideas seriously and act on what they say will institutions will become safer places.
Jehovah’s Witnesses are under the spotlight at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sex Abuse.
Jehovah’s Witnesses do not report child abuse to authorities. Instead, they convene an in-house judicial committee, which is fraught with difficulty because they rely on a "two-witness rule".
An issue to emerge from the royal commission hearings is the inadequacy of existing law for dealing with institutions whose negligence made child sexual abuse possible.
The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has published a research paper that suggests organisations be held criminally responsible when their negligence results in harm to children.
Broadcaster Derryn Hinch is a prominent campaigner for US-style sex offender registries, but it is important to be aware of their limitations.
Western Australia was the first state in the nation to allow public access to a sex offender register online. The public needs to understand how it works to avoid a false sense of security.
The Catholic Archbishop of Adelaide, Philip Wilson, has been charged with concealing child sexual abuse in the 1970s.
Philip Wilson, the Catholic Archbishop of Adelaide, is the most senior clergyman in the world to face a charge of concealing sexual abuse in the church.
Religious institutions have consistently struggled to respond to child sexual abuse cases appropriately.
Speaking with: Tim Jones on child sexual abuse within religious institutions.
The Conversation 21.6 MB (download)
The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse reconvened this week. Announced in 2012, the commission was established due to growing concerns over consistently inadequate responses…
Convicted sex offender and former Marist Brother Gregory Sutton (left) tries to hide his face while leaving a Royal Commission into child sexual abuse hearing.
I have seen firsthand how child sexual abuse is rife in every part of the Australian community – but only sometimes is that abuse reported in full colour. It probably won’t surprise you if I say that I’ve…
Former Retta Dixon resident Sandra Kitching guides the royal commissioners around what was the site of the children’s home.
In 1998, the new directors of the Aborigines Inland Mission changed its name to Australian Indigenous Ministries. They cleaned out the cupboards and placed the archive they had inherited, starting with…
George Pell insists it is individual moral failures that are the root of the Catholic Church’s problems.
AAP Image/Dan Himbrechts
It is the long-held view of Cardinal George Pell and other senior Catholic officials that the sexual abuse crisis is an issue primarily about the moral failure of individual priests and not related to…