Media Alerts & Releases

 

Wednesday 20 December: Royal Commission Recommendations

Body Safety Australia welcomes the Final Report Recommendations of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. The Royal Commission heard evidence from over 8,000 survivors of childhood sexual abuse over five years and now comprehensively outlines how we can best work to prevent childhood sexual abuse and support those children and young people who have been victimised. 

Resoundingly, the Commission advocates for ‘prevention education delivered through daycare, preschool, school, sport and recreational settings and other intuitional settings aims to increase children’s knowledge of sexual abuse and build practical skills to assist in strengthening self protective skills and strategies.’ They go on to say that this education should be delivered to children and young people, parents and professionals. A whole-community approach has been proven to be best practice in prevention education and one that Body Safety Australia adopts in the delivery of our Superstars program. 

Body Safety Australia uses best-practice research and ongoing evaluation to guide the development and refinement of our programs. Our evaluations have shown that working alongside early childhood and school educators has been invaluable. This collaborative approach has allowed teachers and leadership teams to build confidence and capacity in prevention education, while supporting parents in adopting child safe practices in the home. This approach also allows for classes to be tailored to meet the cultural and accessibility needs of students and their families. 

Survivors of childhood sexual abuse speak frequently of feeling disempowered and not having had an awareness that what was being done to them was wrong or that they could seek assistance from protective adults. The Commission has recommended that ‘children participate in decisions affecting them and [be] taken seriously.’ Having children actively participate in classes is positive, not only for individual children, but also as it continues to inform educators of the concerns held by this generation of children. 

We also appreciate the Report’s focus on the role of online safety education for children, parents and professionals. Historically, cybersafety has failed to discuss grooming and non-consensual sexual behaviours either by adults or other young people that put children and young people at risk. We are increasingly seeing childhood sexual abuse being perpetrated online, with Detective Inspector Rouse of Taskforce Argos saying that there has been a ‘proliferation of sexual abuse images self-produced by young children’. It is essential that online education commences for parents and professionals in early childhood settings and for children from primary school. Our online safety program has benefited by being informed by youth consultation and our work in sexual abuse prevention, respectful relationships and sexuality education. 

The team at Body Safety Australia would like to offer thanks to the many hundreds of people involved in the Royal Commission both professionally and those brave enough to give evidence. We urge the State and Federal Governments to adopt all the recommendations and look forward to creating a culture where grooming behaviour is called to account and where children’s voices are heard and acted upon. 

Media Contact: Deanne Carson | 0410 613 040 | deanne@bodysafetyaustralia.com.au




Media Contact

Deanne Carson

email: deanne@bodysafetyaustralia.com.au

mobile: 0410 613 040

website: www.deannecarson.com 

Media Mentions

Body Safety Australia has been featured and quoted in various media, and has published articles in print media. See our full list here.

 


Quotes attributable to Body Safety Australia

It is never a child or victim’s responsibility to protect themselves from abuse. We support communities in preventing abuse and help create generational change where sexual and gendered violence is no longer normalised.

Culture change occurs when caring teachers and parents are supported in modelling asking for, and respecting consent so that this becomes the standard that young people uphold as they become adults. Children are taught, not only their right to bodily autonomy, but their responsibility to respect the bodies and feelings of their peers.
— Body Safety Australia
The child safety landscape is changing as a result of the Betrayal of Trust Inquiry and Report. We have heard about years of sexual abuse and years of the blatant disregard of complaints from those who were sexually abused, but the Victorian Government is committed to ensuring that this cannot happen in Victoria again. They have introduced Child Safe Standards so that organisations can better respond to allegations of abuse and misconduct.
— Deanne Carson, co-founder of Body Safety Australia
Our impulse is often to ask how we can better protect our children. Instead we need to ask how we can prevent people from abusing children. Abuse prevention education needs to support families in understanding grooming techniques, as well as empowering children and young people in becoming aware of inappropriate relationships (online and offline) and how to reach out for help.
— Deanne Carson, co-founder of Body Safety Australia
We love doing these workshops, they are very important, but they are also fun! We use toys, games and group activities to help the kids identify feeling safe or unsafe. We also teach them the anatomical words for their body parts - enabling them to communicate more clearly about their bodies. That always gets some giggles!
— Whitney Yip, co-founder of Body Safety Australia
It’s fabulous to see teachers really connecting with body safety strategies and making simple changes to their practice to help empower students. Teachers have changed mat time song lyrics from ‘give your friend a hug’ to ‘offer your friend a hug’. Little things like this make a huge difference in showing respect for a child’s bodily autonomy.
— Whitney Yip, co-founder of Body Safety Australia

Low Resolution Images (Click to Download) 

Co-Founder Whitney Yip introducing consent with Huggtopus at Bridge Road Early Learning Centre. Photo: Klari Agar

Co-Founder Whitney Yip introducing consent with Huggtopus at Bridge Road Early Learning Centre.

Photo: Klari Agar

Bridge Road Early Learning Centre children engaged and participating in Body Safety Australia's Body Safety Superstars 4yo program.  Photo: Klari Agar

Bridge Road Early Learning Centre children engaged and participating in Body Safety Australia's Body Safety Superstars 4yo program. 

Photo: Klari Agar

Bridge Road Early Centre child engaged in BSA's Body Safety Superstars Kindergarten Program Photo: Klari Agar

Bridge Road Early Centre child engaged in BSA's Body Safety Superstars Kindergarten Program

Photo: Klari Agar

Co-founder Whitney Yip introducing and identifying 5 Safe Adults using Body Safety Australia's handmade felt finger puppets.  Photo: Klari Agar

Co-founder Whitney Yip introducing and identifying 5 Safe Adults using Body Safety Australia's handmade felt finger puppets. 

Photo: Klari Agar

Bridge Road Early Learning Centre children learning about their feelings with co-founder Whitney Yip Photo: Klari Agar

Bridge Road Early Learning Centre children learning about their feelings with co-founder Whitney Yip

Photo: Klari Agar

Co-founders of Body Safety Australia, Whitney Yip and Deanne Carson at Bridge Road Early Learning Centre. Body Safety Australia launch.  Photo: Klari Agar

Co-founders of Body Safety Australia, Whitney Yip and Deanne Carson at Bridge Road Early Learning Centre. Body Safety Australia launch. 

Photo: Klari Agar


Quotes from our clients

I just wanted to thank you for the wonderful work you have done with the children, families and educators at Minimbah. The feedback from our families about the program has been very positive and our work with you has also provided us with a wonderful provocation for reflection and discussion as a team of educators. The children have embraced the concepts covered in your sessions and we are gradually trying to build learning around emotions, assertive language, consent and permission into our program to scaffold and support the children’s learning.

Thank you for providing us with such strong modelling, we are all feeling more empowered to cover this content as a result of our sessions with you!
— Lisa Coxon, Director of Minimbah Early Childhood Centre, Woodleigh School
. . . a tough topic but done with such sensitivity, professionalism and humour. Informative and respectful to children, young people, their carer’s and their community. This is the epitome of good collaborative, educative work at all levels
— Maria Strofalis, Family Counsellor, Good Shepherd Australia New Zealand
Expertly delivered using very accessible language and anecdotes. Highly engaging and full of practical examples. This should be MANDATORY training for all graduate teachers/childcare workers! Also as part of the teacher undergraduate course.
— Brunswick North West Primary School OSHC
Thank you so much Deanne, for the evening and everything. I got so much out of it; one of the best parenting things I’ve done. You’re the talk of the playground!
— A.M, Badger Creek Primary School
TRY Australia’s Children’s Service have benefited greatly from the non-biased and knowledgeable content delivered to our Teachers and Educators. Staff feel empowered in delivering a ‘Body Safe’ curriculum to our children and our families. Thank you, Body Safety Australia!
— Tabitha Farrugia, Early Years Advisor, TRY Australia
The Professional Development session we did with Body Safety Australia was hugely beneficial to all of our staff. Our new staff members got a great understanding of body safety for children and our more experienced staff were able to refresh and confirm their practices. The delivery was well considered and allowed for lots of discussion.
— Ben Mason, OHSC Coordinator, Merri Creek Primary School

High Resolution Images (Click to Download) 

Children at Bridge Road Early Learning Centre learning the difference between public and private body parts with co-founder Whitney Yip. Photo: Klari Agar 

Children at Bridge Road Early Learning Centre learning the difference between public and private body parts with co-founder Whitney Yip.

Photo: Klari Agar 

Max discussing consent with co-founder Whitney Yip and Huggtopus. Photo: Klari Agar

Max discussing consent with co-founder Whitney Yip and Huggtopus.

Photo: Klari Agar

Children at Bridge Road Early Learning Centre listening to 'Surprise! Mum's Birthday' to learn the difference between secrets and surprises. Photo: Klari Agar

Children at Bridge Road Early Learning Centre listening to 'Surprise! Mum's Birthday' to learn the difference between secrets and surprises.

Photo: Klari Agar

Children learning about their feelings while playing Roll 'n' Play Emotions  Photo: Klari Agar

Children learning about their feelings while playing Roll 'n' Play Emotions 

Photo: Klari Agar