The commission will not hesitate to air allegations which may damage the reputations of institutions and individuals.

Australia: The Royal Commissionís first day - Comment on 2013 April 3

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The Catholic Church would like us to believe that all that stuff was in the past and has been dealt with. "One which is important for the work of this royal commission is our preparedness to challenge authority and the actions of people in power." Read more:

Here some news items from the first day of the Royal Commission in Australia:

 

The royal commission into child sex abuse will look at the sentences handed down in the courts for child predators.

Commission chair Peter McClellan said the commission would not hesitate to air allegations which may damage the reputations of institutions and individuals.

Justice McClellan said sex abuse of children in a variety of institutions was already apparent from other inquiries and cases prosecuted in the courts.

Justice McClellan begun the commission's hearings by saying their job was to bear witness on behalf of the nation to the trauma caused by abuse.

To make it easier for victims to tell their stories, private meetings would be heard in hotel rooms, he said.

"One which is important for the work of this royal commission is our preparedness to challenge authority and the actions of people in power."

The six royal commissioners cannot become captives of organisations like the Catholic Church who would like us to believe that all that stuff was in the past and has been dealt with, full stop.

Many, like Bravehearts, want that to include the courts as an "institution", specifically the sentencing of child sex offenders who often walk away with a proverbial slap on the wrist.

Private and public hearings are likely to begin in the final quarter of 2013.

The next stage will involve private meetings with victims, probably carried out in function rooms at hotels and motels around the country to encourage informality and privacy, and Justice McClellan predicted there would be no public hearings before October.

The private sessions do not count as hearings and the information, which is given without an oath, is not evidence, but witnesses can appear again in a formal hearing.

 

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