Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Rockliff says govt agencies reviews to leave no stone unturned for youth protections

Tasmanian Premier, Jeremy Rockliff says Government will leave no stone unturned when it comes to keeping Tasmania’s children and young people safe.

The Premier has released details of two independent reviews which he says will ensure the actions of State Servants are closely examined and held to account where necessary.

“It is important that Tasmanians can have confidence that the Government is leaving no stone unturned. Nothing is more important than the safety of our children and young people,” Premier Rockliff said.

“I want to assure Tasmanians we are working tirelessly to make sure children are safe and the past is not repeated.”

An Independent Review has been established to consider the actions, and effectiveness of those actions, by government agencies and other relevant authorities taken in response to the information and concerns raised by Tasmanian Commission of Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse in Institutional Settings about Tasmanian State Service employees and officers.

This review will be led by Australian Public Service Commissioner Peter Woolcott AO.

A separate independent review, to be led by former Auditor General Mike Blake, will consider the actions, and effectiveness of those actions, taken by the Heads of Agency as they relate to the information contained within the Report of the Commission of Inquiry and make any relevant recommendations.

This review will also look at:

  • whether conduct by the Heads of Agency listed as it relates to the information contained within the Report of the Commission of Inquiry would be considered a breach of the Tasmanian State Service Code of Conduct and make any relevant recommendations.
  • any other matter relating to Head of Agency conduct as is relevant to child safety and the matters explored by the Commission of Inquiry that the Independent Assessor determines relevant.

The Premier said the reviews will also consider the actions taken by Heads of Agency in relation to the COI and the effectiveness of those actions.

“I have said before that I have every confidence in our Heads of Agency and it is important that the public does too. That’s why the decisions by Heads of Agency will be reviewed against the Tasmanian State Service Code of Conduct to determine if there were any breaches, and recommendations can be made where necessary,” Premier Rockliff said.

“The Reviewers will enable submissions to be made to the independent reviews and, as appropriate, for people to be heard personally.

“The independent reviewers will also be able to engage with former Commissioners to ensure the challengers outlined in Volume 1, Chapter 5.1, can be fully considered.”

Both reviewers have been asked to engage with the former Commissioners of the Commission of Inquiry to ensure that all issues are considered in the scope of both reviews. This will include any residual concerns that the Commissioners may have had and felt couldn’t be addressed in the Commission’s final report.

The Government says it will provide all support and resources required to ensure that the former Commissions are able to engage in these two independent reviews.

The full terms of reference are available here and here.

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