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Truth, Trauma and Healing: Stories of Aboriginal Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse in Out-of-Home Care

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Child Sexual Abuse in Black and Minoritised Communities

Abstract

This chapter highlights the importance of the voices and expertise belonging to Aboriginal survivors of institutional child sexual abuse (CSA). It explores their insights into healing from CSA, including their healing needs, opportunities for healing, and barriers to and enablers of healing. The chapter presents themes developed from a phenomenological thematic analysis of 51 narratives provided to the Australian Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse by adult Aboriginal survivors who were abused in out-of-home care between the 1940s and the 1990s. The Royal Commission’s approach to gathering evidence included private sessions, a truth-telling process used for the first time in an Australian Royal Commission. The Commission found that all children in institutions during 1940s–1990s were vulnerable to CSA and that Aboriginal children experienced increased vulnerability due to a range of historical and contemporary factors. Findings from the analysis of the narratives indicate that institutional CSA occurred in the context of cultural abuse and collective trauma.

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Correspondence to Carlina Black .

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Black, C., Bamblett, M., Frederico, M. (2022). Truth, Trauma and Healing: Stories of Aboriginal Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse in Out-of-Home Care. In: Gill, A.K., Begum, H. (eds) Child Sexual Abuse in Black and Minoritised Communities. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-031-06337-4_11

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