In NSW a crime is not considered a SERIOUS OFFENCE unless is carries a maximum sentence of AT LEAST FIVE years imprisonment. Serious crimes are allocated greater resources and attract a higher degree of attention from the NSW Police.

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sex Abuse created a deeper and fuller understanding into the depth of suffering that Child Sexual Abuse inflicts upon its innocent victims. Many have lost their lives while those who have survived are, more often than not, subjected to a life sentence of psychological damage and torment. So much of who they were ever truly meant to be has been stolen and is lost forever. In light of this, sentences for those who commit Child Sex Offences have been significantly increased, in some cases to life in prison, never to be released. This is praiseworthy.

Beyond the evil of those who perpetrated these heinous acts lay another tier of heartless individuals. These are they who knew of the crimes being committed and either ignored them or deliberately and intentionally concealed them. In many cases the abuse could have been stopped and many more children spared the suffering that they were forced to endure. The depth of this heartless enabling revealed by the Royal Commission was almost beyond belief. In spite of this, the sentence for Concealing Child Sex Offences remains virtually unchanged with the maximum penalty still being only two years. This is totally unacceptable.

If our courts are to hand down sentences that are truly appropriate then the politicians need to provide the tools to get the job done. The citizens of NSW therefore have to send a clear message to the politicians as to what we expect when it comes to sentencing those who conceal Child Sex Offences. This can be done through a petition.

Please DOWNLOAD and CIRCULATE the petition. Completed petitions can then be returned to: PETITION NSW C/- PO BOX 20, MAITLAND NSW 2320.

Further to this, you should write to your Local Member of Parliament and tell them that the current maximum penalty of two years imprisonment for those who conceal child sex offences is inadequate and the maximum penalty should be increased to at least five years.

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