Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Victoria's finest, again

Victoria's police force 'exposed children to risk' from sex offenders, report finds. Why is child protection such a joke in so many jurisdictions?

FAILURE by Victoria Police to pass on information about registered sex offenders has left more than 700 children exposed to "unacceptable risk", the state's ombudsman has found.

In a damning report delivered to Victoria's parliament today, Ombudsman George Brouwer has slammed the police's “inadequate commitment” to the sex offenders register as part of a systemic breakdown in how the state manages known sex offenders.

Between October 2004, when the sex offenders register began, until March 2010, 899 registered sex offenders reported to Victoria Police that they had contact with at least one child. But as The Australian revealed in August, information regarding 376 of those offenders was never passed on by police to the Department of Human Services. Those 376 offenders have reported contact with over 700 children.

“The exact number of children with whom these offenders may have had contact is difficult to ascertain,” Mr Brouwer wrote in his report. “In some instances, offenders were found to have been in contact with a greater number of children than he or she had initially disclosed to Victoria Police. “As investigations conclude, it is likely that this number will increase.”

Mr Brouwer found the police failure to report the information to the department “has left children exposed to unacceptable risk”.

He also attacked Corrections Victoria for seeking permission from the registered sex offenders before releasing information about them, saying the agency “opted to place the rights of registered sex offenders over the rights of vulnerable children that may be at risk of harm”.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Spammers: Don't bother. Irrelevant comments won't be published