MEDIA RELEASE: Comment on National Apology

This media release concerns the National Apology to Victims and Survivors of Institutional Child Sexual Abuse, delivered by the Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, on 22 October 2018, and the statement made by the Leader of the Opposition, Bill Shorten. Those speeches can be viewed here.

To download this media release in PDF format, click here.


Comment on National Apology

Anton Block, President
16 October 2018

The Executive Council of Australian Jewry, for itself and the Australian Jewish community, whole-heartedly endorses the national apology to victims and survivors of institutional child sexual abuse that was made in the Federal parliament by Prime Minister Scott Morrison, and the call to action that followed by Opposition Leader Bill Shorten.

In particular we acknowledge and join in the apology for the abuses that have occurred in Jewish institutions, the failure to heed the warning signs, the refusal to listen to complaints from children and their families, the failure to protect the children and the reprisal actions taken against those who exposed the wrongdoing. It is a core part of our Jewish values that the life of the individual cannot be sacrificed to the interests or convenience of any institution, and it is a shocking truth that certain institutions that pride themselves on their Jewish ethos at times failed to operate by those values.

We must redouble our efforts to ensure that Jewish community organisations which have the care of children have adopted and implemented appropriate standards of child protection and are taking a preventative, proactive and participatory approach to child safety issues, so that the safety and wellbeing of children in each of their organisations is a paramount consideration in their policies and operations. We must also continue to encourage Jewish community organisations which have had the care of children to join the National Redress Scheme.

There can be no higher priority than protecting the safety and well-being of our children.

Peter Wertheim | Co-CEO
ph: 02 8353 8500 | m: 0408 160 904
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