Report - Public hearing 17 - The experience of women and girls with disability with a particular focus on family, domestic and sexual violence: Niky case study
- Public hearing reports
Report on Public hearing 17 – The experience of women and girls with disability with a particular focus on family, domestic and sexual violence – Niky case study
The Disability Royal Commission held Public hearing 17 across several days in 2021 and 2022.
The hearing looked at women and girls with disability and their experiences of family, domestic and sexual violence.
The hearing also heard about the particular experiences of LBTQIA+ people with disability in a session that was closed to the public.
The hearing featured a case study about a woman with disability called Niky (not her real name) and the organisation Anglicare Southern Queensland (Anglicare).
We have written a report about this case study. This video is a summary of the report.
Niky case study
Niky is in her late 30s and has a disability. She lives and works with her parents. In 2016 she was attending a respite centre in Queensland. The respite centre was operated by Anglicare.
In September 2018, Niky was sexually assaulted at the respite centre. About one month later, the person who assaulted Niky was charged, found guilty of the assault and convicted.
The hearing looked at Anglicare’s response to the assault and the way they handled it.
Findings and recommendations
The report found that Anglicare’s response to the assault and the way they handled it was inadequate.
It found Anglicare failed to follow its own procedures and policies in relation to reporting and responding to the assault. For example, Anglicare:
did not report the crime to Queensland Police
did not support Niky to attend the nearest sexual assault service for counselling and an examination
did not provide written feedback to Niky and her parents after the incident, and after they had completed their internal processes.
delayed providing Niky and her family a full, face-to-face apology and opportunity to discuss their experiences with them.
The report found Anglicare did not do a proper internal investigation.
It also found the respite centre did not have educational programs for its participants on topics like respectful relationships, consent and choice.
The report recommends that Anglicare:
consults with Niky and her family about any further redress, such as counselling or compensation
immediately reviews its complaint and investigation systems to fix gaps in the way it addresses allegations of sexual violence and abuse.
To read the full report, visit our website. Search ‘Public hearing 17’.