Our children are our NUMBER ONE RESOURCE AND RESPONSIBILITY. The quality of our children's experiences dictates the quality of our future citizens, or societies, our communities, our national culture, our economy and our families. They dictate our FUTURE. Therefore, nothing could be more important to our nation, and to our world, than ensuring the safety and welfare of the fundamental building block of humanity..., our children.
The establishment of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, whilst of the utmost of importance to all of us, will only focus on a proportion of the issue of child abuse. What is frightening is that the greatest proportion of child neglect and abuse is occurring within our homes, yet the stories falling from the Royal Commission speak of an unfathomable number of cases causing unimaginable horror for the individuals and children concerned, in organisations ALONE.
Without judgement, we need to offer support to those in abuse's grip. Those children, suffering RIGHT NOW, need to have that suffering brought out of the darkness in which it thrives, and into the light, where affected children can claim their lost identities, where wanton perpetrators can be dealt with in our courts, and where the general community can use their education and awareness to further protect children's rights, understand their own responsibilities to their children, and to support those that may be caught in the cycle of abuse and who reach out for understanding and help.
However, the scourge of child abuse and child neglect can only be successfully treated if it is given the highest priority on Australia's national social agenda.
Whilst there exists many great initiatives, services and organisations established to support people caught in the 'cycle of abuse', a missing and central plank in our national support and awareness framework is a holistic focus on one of the major causes of our continuing battle with mental illness, incarceration, drug addiction, homicide, suicide, homelessness, unemployment, disability, educational disadvantage, poverty, crime and a myriad of other social afflictions..., that of child abuse and child neglect.
Therefore, I propose to establish the National Child Welfare Initiative, which will seek to do three things;
Stop Child Abuse
Stop Child Neglect
Enhance the awareness of Child Welfare standards nationally, with an intent to show leadership and influence standards and awareness globally.
It will do this by;
Petitioning our Federal Government to have Child Welfare placed at the top of our national social agenda.
Mobilising support and awareness of the issue through the funding and creation of a national awareness campaign.
Increase community awareness and understanding of the social, economic and cultural costs of child neglect and abuse.
Placing Australia at the forefront of global leadership in the fight against child abuse and child neglect.
These things can only be achieved if we develop momentum towards these things from the weight of societal expectation and motivation.
Please sign this petition as a commitment to helping a child reclaim their lost identity, to helping those in the grip of the cycle of abuse escape with dignity and support, and to show the world how national leadership and commitment can drive global change.