SURVIVORS of child sexual abuse and the community will gather in Tamworth on Monday to watch the historic apology by the Prime Minister to victims.
On Monday morning, Prime Minister Scott Morrison will deliver a national apology for victims and survivors of child sexual abuse as well as their friends and families.
Abuse survivor and Mind Matters mental health support group organiser Helen Mary Jones said locals were invited to attend a streaming of the apology in Tamworth.
“It’s been very traumatic for many people,” she said.
“This is for anyone, whether they have been a victim of abuse or not. It’s a community event to support everyone, we have to treat people with compassion and dignity and for many of us who were abused, we weren’t believed.
“I hope people will come to this event and feel like they have been listened too.”
The emotional day and the battle for many of them to be heard follows the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Assault, set-up more than five years ago.
Herself a survivor, and one who gave evidence to the commission, Ms Jones said Monday was a significant day.
“I really wanted something to be done locally, being in the country we often miss out on these things,” she said.
“West Leagues Club have quite happily said they will give us a room to watch and they will be providing morning tea.”
Less than a thousand people will attend the apology in Parliament House, and many survivors including Ms Jones missed out.
“It’s a big day for us, this is a chance for us to support one another, because so many people have been abused and quite a number of people struggle with mental illness,” she said.
“This is a chance for the community to recognise this, to say we're here, and we're listening.
“This is my reason for doing this, because I know how they feel.”
The streaming of the national apology and the morning tea will be held from 10am at West Tamworth Leagues Club in Phillip Street.
The royal commission was first announced in November 2012 by then Prime Minister Julia Gillard and hearings began in April the following year.
In December 2017, the final report detailing the five-year inquiry was delivered to the Governor-General.
The apology to survivors was one of 104 recommendations from the royal commission, presented in late-2017.
In the five-year inquiry, the commission handled more than 42,000 calls, received close to 26,000 letters and emails and held more than 8,000 private sessions with victims.
During the inquiry, 2,575 referrals were made to authorities including police.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.