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Final Report

On 12 November 2012 the then Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, announced that she would recommend to the Governor-General that a Royal Commission be appointed to inquire into institutional responses to child abuse.

Following this announcement, the Terms of Reference were established and six Commissioners were appointed on Friday, 11 January 2013 by Her Excellency Quentin Bryce, Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia. The Hon. Justice Peter McClellan AM was the chair of the Royal Commission and worked with the five other Commissioners, Mr Bob Atkinson AO APM, Justice Jennifer Coate, Mr Robert Fitzgerald AM, Professor Helen Milroy and Mr Andrew Murray. Visit Our Commissioners to read their full biographies.

On 15 December 2017 the Royal Commission presented a final report to the Governor-General, detailing the culmination of a five year inquiry into institutional responses to child sexual abuse and related matters.

The Final Report structure

Click the heading of the volume to read more information.

  • Recommendations
  • Preface and Executive Summary includes a summary of the final report and a complete list of all recommendations. Final information update contains statistics from the group of survivors we heard from in 8,013 private sessions, held between May 2013 and November 2017.

Our inquiry

  • Volume 1, Our inquiry introduces the Final Report, describes the establishment, scope and operations of the Royal Commission.

Understanding child sexual abuse in institutional contexts

  • Volume 2, Nature and cause describes what the Royal Commission has learned about the nature and cause of child sexual abuse in institutional contexts. It includes one recommendation.
  • Volume 3, Impacts explains the impacts of child sexual abuse in institutional contexts on survivors and often on their family members, friends, and entire communities.
  • Volume 4, Identifying and disclosing child sexual abuse describes what we learned about survivors’ experiences of disclosing child sexual abuse.
  • Volume 5, Private sessions examines survivors' experiences of child sexual abuse as told to Commissioners during private sessions.

Child safe institutions

Support and treatment

Particular institutions

Beyond the Royal Commission

  • Volume 17, Beyond the Royal Commission describes the impact and legacy of the Royal Commission and discusses monitoring and reporting on the implementation of our recommendations. It includes six recommendations.

Summary fact sheets for different audiences can be found below:

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