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Changes to our Terms of Reference

The Royal Commission’s Terms of Reference were amended in June 2023 to support delivery of the final report by 28 March 2024 and to prevent delays to cross-government work on a new independent redress system for survivors.
There were four key changes. The Royal Commission must:
  • not receive and consider new evidence after 31 July 2023, other than that which may arise during natural justice processes, if doing so may delay completion of the final report
  • not produce any additional interim reports after 31 July 2023, or produce any additional research reports, case studies, or issues papers if doing so may delay completion of the final report
  • deliver draft final recommendations to the appropriate Minister by 30 November 2023, and explain any differences between these, and those provided in the final report, and
  • find ways to ensure the public understands and has access to its final report.  
You can read the updated terms of reference on our website: Terms of Reference
You can view the full Amendment Order on the legislation website: Royal Commission of Inquiry into Historical Abuse in State Care and in the Care of Faith-based Institutions Amendment Order 2023 (SL 2023/141) – New Zealand Legislation

Marylands School and Hebron Trust abuse report due in early August

The Royal Commission’s report on the Order of St John of God will be presented to the Governor-General in Wellington on Monday 31 July. 
It is expected that the Minister will table the report in Parliament in early August. We do not have the exact date it will become public yet.
However, we will make every effort to reach you before it is released, to let you know what is happening. On the day the report is released, we will send you a summary and information about how to access the full report on our website.
Easy Read, NZ Sign Language and audio summary versions
To make it accessible for all, there will be an Easy Read summary version, NZ Sign Language video and audio link for those with sight disability. We will send you more information about all this nearer the time.
We are here to support you at this difficult time
We know that the coming release of the St John of God report may distress some survivors. Remember, we are here for you. If you need support, contact us during weekday hours at 0800 222 727, free text 8155 or email us at contact@abuseincare.org.nz.

Survivor Experiences Service (formerly the interim listening service)

The Survivor Experiences Service is now available for survivors of abuse in care, and their whānau, who want to share their experiences.
The Service is guided by an independent Board and housed within Te Tari Taiwhenua Department of Internal Affairs. It has been set up in response to the Royal Commission’s recommendations in He Purapura Ora, he Māra Tipu From Redress to Puretumu Torowhānui and will run until a new, permanent redress system is in place.
Survivors who were unable to share with the Royal Commission of Inquiry are welcome to share their experiences with the Survivor Experiences Service. The contact details for the Survivor Experiences Service are: There is more information on the Survivor Experiences Service website.

On behalf of the Crown Response Unit

Updates on the Government’s response to the Abuse in Care Inquiry

The Crown Response Unit coordinates the Government’s response to the Abuse in Care Royal Commission of Inquiry. Its work programme is focused on implementing recommendations from the Commission’s 2021 redress report, for example, the development of a survivor-led independent redress system for historic abuse in care. To stay informed about its work programme you can email: contact@abuseinquiryresponse.govt.nz with ‘panui’ in the subject line and you will be added to its subscriber database.

How to get in touch with us
Call us in New Zealand on 0800 222 727 between 8.30am and 4.30pm Monday to Friday, or text 8185.
Call us from Australia on free phone 1800 875 745.
Write to us at PO Box 10071Wellington 6140.
Visit our website www.abuseincare.org.nz.

Help and support services

  • Alcohol and Drug Helpline 0800 787 797 or online chat for people dealing with an alcohol or other drug problem; 10 am to 10 pm
  • Anxiety phone line 0800 269 4389 (0800 ANXIETY)
  • Depression Helpline 0800 111 757 or free text 4202 (to talk to a trained counsellor about how you are feeling or to ask any questions)
  • Family Services 211 Helpline 0800 211 211 for help finding (and direct transfer to) community based health and social support services in your area.
  • HELP 0800 623 1700 preventing sexual abuse and supporting survivors 24/7.
  • Lifeline 0800 543 354 (0800 LIFELINE) or free text 4357 (HELP)
  • Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse Aotearoa New Zealand Support services for male survivors of sexual abuse. Refer to website for the support organisation nearest to you.
  • Need to talk? Free call or text 1737 any time for support from a trained counsellor
  • OUTline NZ 0800 688 5463 (OUTLINE) provides confidential telephone support for sexuality or gender identity issues; 9 am to 9 pm weekdays, and 6 pm to 8 pm weekends)
  • Rape Crisis 0800 883 300 (for support after rape or sexual assault)
  • Safe to talk (Available 24/7) 0800 044 334, free txt 4334, email support@safetotalk.nz, live webchat on www.safetotalk.nz. Free and confidential information and support from trained counsellors for people affected by sexual harm in any way.
  • Samaritans 0800 726 666.
  • Shine 0508 744 633, free to call from any phone in NZ, and taking calls 7 days a week, 24 hours a day. Call for confidential support, information, advice and referrals.
  • Skylight, 0800 299 100 for trauma, loss and grief; 9am–5pm weekdays.
  • SNAP - Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests Providing peer support for women and men wounded by religious and institutional authorities
  • Suicide Crisis Helpline 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO).
  • Supporting Families in Mental Illness For families and whānau supporting a loved one who has a mental illness. Auckland 0800 732 825. 
  • Victim Support This free service provides emotional and practical support, information, financial assistance, referral to other support services and advocacy for the rights of victims.
  • Wellington HELP 0800 FOR HELP supports anyone and everyone who has been impacted by sexual violence. Call anytime.
  • Youthline 0800 376 633, free text 234 or email talk@youthline.co.nz or online chat