The Abuse in Care Royal Commission of Inquiry Faith-based Redress hearing starts today in Auckland.

Commissioners will hear from three witnesses. Witness evidence summaries are outlined below.

The hearing is being live-streamed here.

Hearing location: Level 2, 414 Khyber Pass Road, Newmarket, Auckland 1023.

30 November


Opening statements.

11.00am (approx.):

Frances Tagaloa

Frances will give evidence about the sexual and emotional abuse she experienced in the early 1970s when she was a primary school student. The abuser was a Marist Brother who taught at the nearby Marist Brothers intermediate school in Ponsonby, Auckland. As a survivor of Pacific descent, Frances will address the cultural and other barriers she experienced in disclosing the abuse, and how the abuse has affected her. She will discuss the Catholic Church’s redress process, which has involved earlier communications with the Marist Brothers, and more recent contact with the Church’s National Office for Professional Standards and the Marist Brothers. She will present her views about how the Catholic Church might prevent abuse including recommendations from the Australian Royal Commission of Inquiry about reforming the Catholic Church’s canon law. 


Tina Cleary (on behalf of Patrick Cleary) – will not be livestreamed. Video and witness statement will be available on shortly after evidence is given.

Patrick’s evidence will be read by his daughter Tina, as Patrick passed away earlier this year. His evidence describes the abuse he suffered over four years at the Catholic secondary school, St Patrick’s in Silverstream. In a statement titled ‘Shame’, Patrick explains why it took him so long to share his story. His evidence describes the difficulties he faced when attempting to complain to the Police, and to the Catholic Order the Society of Mary.


“Mr G”

Mr G’s evidence outlines the abuse he experienced at Marist Brothers’ School in Whanganui. In late 2019, Mr G made a complaint to the National Office for Professional Standards after seeing an Otago Daily Times article which named his abuser as a serial offender who had been the subject of multiple complaints to the Marist Brothers. Mr G’s complaint to the National Office for Professional Standards has not yet been resolved, but his desired outcomes are a written apology, an acknowledgement of the issue of abuse within the Catholic Church, and an ex-gratia payment.


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About the Abuse in Care Inquiry

The Abuse in Care Royal Commission of Inquiry is investigating the abuse and neglect that happened to children, young people and vulnerable adults in care from 1950 and 1999. It will also consider experiences of abuse or neglect before outside these dates. After completing its investigations, it will make recommendations to the Governor General on how New Zealand can better care for children, young people and vulnerable adults.