Child Protection

PETITION TO INCREASE MAXIMUM PENALTY FOR CONCEALING ABUSE

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ABC Newcastle

📝 PETITION TO INCREASE MAXIMUM PENALTY FOR CONCEALING ABUSE 👩‍⚖️

An advocate for child sexual abuse survivors in the Hunter region is ramping up his campaign to increase the penalty for people who conceal child sexual abuse.

Maitland Pastor Bob Cotton has launched a website in a bid to have 10,000 people sign his petition, which will force the issue to be debated in NSW Parliament.

Earlier this month, Adelaide’s Archbishop Philip Wilson was sentenced to 12 months home detention after being convicted of concealing child sexual abuse.

Pastor Cotton says the maximum two-year jail sentence is “manifestly inadequate”.

“It doesn’t reflect the criminality of the action, not does it reflect community expectation, or act as a deterrent for people who conceal child sex crimes,” he said.

“So, we need to see the penalties for such crime increased significantly to achieve those objectives.”

Pastor Cotton says the current maximum sentence must be increased to five years.

“Now, what that does is it takes it from being a summary offence, a misdemeanour, to a serious offence,” he said.

“If it’s a serious offence the police can dedicate more resources to prosecuting these people, and it’s worth the court’s time to go the distance.”

For more information: http://petitionnsw.org.au/