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Australia Raped NT girl clearly at 'risk of harm'

09:10  10 may  2018
09:10  10 may  2018 Source:   msn.com

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A two-year-old NT girl allegedly raped in Tennant Creek was clearly at risk of harm , a report tabled in the Northern Territory parliament has found.A 24-year-old man was charged with sexual assault over the February attack which shocked Australia.

The report is damning for the Territory Families department, which said it had had no specific concerns about the girl . A two-year-old Northern Territory girl allegedly raped in Tennant Creek was clearly at risk of "It was foreseeable that C1 was at risk of harm and that risk could have been managed or

Tennant Creek road sign.© Getty Images Tennant Creek road sign. A two-year-old Northern Territory girl allegedly raped in Tennant Creek was clearly at risk of harm, and that risk could have been managed or mitigated, a report scathing of child welfare services has found.

A 24-year-old man was charged with sexual assault over the February attack which shocked Australia.

The toddler suffered significant and painful injuries, tested positive for a sexually transmitted disease and was provided with post exposure HIV medication.

She was transferred from Tennant Creek Hospital, to Alice Springs and then onto the Adelaide Women's and Children's Hospital for surgery and a blood transfusion, Children's Commissioner Colleen Gwynne said in a report tabled in the NT Parliament.

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The risk to a two-year-old girl who was allegedly raped in her Tennant Creek home was foreseeable, the Northern Territory children’s The commissioner disputed much of the department’s submission but agreed to its proposed amendment to instead say the child was at foreseeable risk of “ harm ”.

Earlier this month, a scathing report of child welfare services found the girl was clearly at risk of harm which could have been managed or mitigated. rejected the report, denying there was any more or less evidence than "many cases" across the NT to indicate the two-year-old was at risk of being raped .

"This was not the only violence that C1 had been exposed to, and experienced, in her short life," Ms Gwynne said, in a heavily redacted report.

"It was foreseeable that C1 was at risk of harm and that risk could have been managed or mitigated."

The report is damning for the Territory Families department, which said it had had no specific concerns about the girl.

"Significant contact with police had also occurred with her siblings and both parents, culminating in over 150 recorded interactions," Ms Gwynne said.

Those notifications with various government authorities included concerns regarding experience of, and exposure to, domestic violence and parental substance abuse, lack of education (attendance), neglect, emotional harm, physical harm and sexual abuse of the children.

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Harm to the girl was a "foreseeable risk " according to a report into the incident. The NT government has accepted the recommendations of the report, but Territory Families, the agency with oversight for child protection, disagreed that it was a foreseeable risk that the girl was at risk of sexual assault.

Poverty is linked to both the perpetration of sexual violence and the risk of being a victim of it. In studies, young males from Cambodia, Mexico, Peru and South Africa, reported that they have participated in incidents where girls were coerced into sex (such as gang rapes ) and that they did so

"Prior to the most recent alleged sexual assault upon C1, police had also conducted investigations in relation to sexual and physical abuse upon her siblings, some of these investigations resulted in prosecutions, with the perpetrator incarcerated," Ms Gwynne said.

A key problem was balancing privacy rights and protecting children, with government employees criticised for not sharing information that would protect young people or ensuring they went to school, she said.

Tennant Creek, the NT's fifth largest town, was described as in a dire state with high unemployment, substance abuse and endemic crime.

Territory Families has rejected the report, saying there was not sufficient evidence for such a finding.

However, Territory Families Minister Dale Wakefield said she accepted the commissioner's 14 recommendations, including that the Care and Protection of Children Act is complied with.

"Many of the recommendations are consistent with recommendations from the Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children," she said in parliament.

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