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New Criminal Offences – Failure to Protect / Failure to Report

In response to recommendations made by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, the NSW government has introduced two new criminal offences:

Failure to Report: Section 316A of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW) makes clear that any adult who knows, or should know, that a child sexual abuse offence has occurred must notify police as soon as possible. There are a limited number of reasonable excuses, including

A similar offence was introduced in the ACT: s66AA of the Crimes Act 1900 (ACT).

Failure to Protect: Section 43B of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW) introduces a new criminal offence for leaders of any organisation that provides services to children. Any leader who fails to take reasonable steps to protect children from risk of abuse may have committed an offence. It is not necessary to prove that any child abuse took place in order for a conviction to occur.A similar offence was introduced in the ACT: s66A of the Crimes Act 1900 (ACT).