Scouts Australia Apologises to Victims of Sexual Abuse

By Reuters

Scouts Australia apologised on Friday (October 5) to victims of sexual abuse in its organisation after an official inquiry found widespread abuse in religious and state-run institutions.

The apology came in response to a five-year, government-appointed inquiry into child sexual abuse that delved into more than 8,000 cases of sexual misconduct.

The inquiry did not reveal the number of children harmed by Scouts Australia workers, but it heard evidence that a former scout leader in New South Wales state indecently assaulted two boys in the 1990s. He was convicted of the offences in 2013.

As well as offering an apology, Scouts Australia said it will adopt all recommendations from the inquiry, unlike the Catholic Church in Australia which said in August it would oppose a recommendation that priests be forced to report child abuse when they learn about it in confessional.

The Australian government this year established a redress scheme that offers abuse victims up to A$150,000.

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