WelCom June 2020:
The following is a statement from Catherine Fyfe, chair, Te Rōpū Tautoko, 22 May 2020.
The Royal Commission of Inquiry into Abuse in Care is planning to restart its public hearings later in 2020. These hearings have been delayed by the Covid-19 restrictions. The first hearing, delayed from March this year, will focus on redress for those who suffered abuse in state care. This hearing will be divided into two parts: the first for survivors and their advocates, followed by a second part in which the Crown will give evidence.
It is likely a faith-based redress hearing will also be held in 2020. This will cover Catholic organisations as well as other faith-based organisations. A wider Catholic inquiry has also begun and the Commission has commenced with information requests to Tautoko, on behalf of Catholic organisations. There is the possibility that other hearings involving Catholic organisations will start in 2020 or early 2021.
We look forward to the announcement of the Royal Commission’s hearing schedule and the release of information on the scope of the Commission’s Inquiry into the Catholic Church.
Tautoko, representing the Catholic Bishops and Congregational Leaders of Aotearoa New Zealand, recognises the way to learn lessons for today
and the future is to examine, understand, acknowledge and address what has occurred. We must, collectively, work towards healing and participate in the Commission process with healing for survivors and a safer Church as the goals.
In the meantime, survivors of abuse can arrange to share their story with the Inquiry’s Commissioners. Private Sessions with Commissioners have been delayed during Covid-19 restrictions but should re-start soon. The Commission also releases a monthly newsletter and all public hearings are livestreamed to the internet. The Commission also has a Facebook profile. More information and contact information can be found at www.abuseincare.org.nz
Tautoko continues to work with Catholic organisations to gather information for the Commission and prepare for hearings.
More information on Te Rōpū Tautoko, including contact information, can be found at www.tautoko.catholic.org.nz