Dilworth School: Former student claims he was caned after reporting sex abuse

Two former Dilworth students have spoken out about their grief and anger over sexual abuse at the school and say the police investigation has come too late.

Seven men with links to the Anglican boys’ boarding school in Auckland have been arrested for historical offending that includes sexual violation and indecent assault.

The inquiry spans four decades going back to the 1970s.

The two former students were at Dilworth during the 1970s – RNZ has agreed not to name them.

Published in Radio NZ

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Research article: Study suggests peer support recovery framework may be relevant for people who are facing the uncertainties presented by Covid-19

The emergence of Covid-19 disrupted most aspects of life, creating a high degree of uncertainty and unpredictability about the future. Knowledge from a place of lived experience offers insights and strategies to better understand how to live, grow and thrive through the difficulties that people who experience mental health challenges, other disabling health conditions, people of color, and people from lower socio-economic backgrounds have overcome. We report on a programmatic effort to investigate how lessons learned through lived experience could be useful to persons who are dealing with a destabilizing situation like this pandemic for the first time, especially mental health providers. Three listening sessions over Zoom were conducted to gather information, views and personal accounts related to the current pandemic. Twenty four people with experience of mental health challenges and people living with disabilities, of various ethnic and racial backgrounds, participated in the sessions. We suggest that the recovery framework can be helpful to address the current crisis; we challenge traditional notions of normality; and finally, we recommend that providers and systems of care adopt a framework that addresses health inequities and human rights.

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Primary author: Ana Carolina Florence
June 2020

Dilworth case ‘unusual’ – Victims advocate

An advocate for victims of abuse in religious institutions says the Dilworth school case is unusual because the accused have ended up in court.

Six men in their 60s and 70s with historical links to the Anglican boys’ school in Auckland have been charged with indecent assault, sexual violation and drug supply.

Police have been investigating the Dilworth claims for a year and have so far identified 17 victims of abuse spanning from the 1970s to the early 2000s.

Liz Tonks, from the Network for Survivors of Abuse in Faith-based Institutions, says it’s unusual to see charges laid in these cases.

At a media conference yesterday the Dilworth Trust Board chair Aaron Snodgrass apologised publicly to any former students who had been abused.

Listen to story

By Morning Report
Published in Radio NZ
15 Sept 2020

In their words: Survivors share their experiences with the Abuse in Care Royal Commission

Last week, the Abuse in Care Royal Commission held its 500th private session with a survivor of abuse and/or neglect in the care of the State or a faith-based institution.

Many of those who shared their story chose to write a few words about the experience, some with a handwritten scrawl on a piece of paper, others through poems or mini-essays.

Published in Stuff

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Six men in 60s, 70s arrested over alleged indecent assaults at Auckland’s Dilworth School

Six men in 60s, 70s arrested over alleged indecent assaults at Auckland’s Dilworth School

Police have arrested six men in their 60s and 70s as part of an investigation into historical offending at Dilworth School in Auckland.

The men have been charged on a number of serious offences, including indecent assault, which allegedly occured across a number of decades from the 1970s to early 2000s.

Detective Senior Sergeant Geoff Baber said the investigation was launched after a complaint was made a year ago.

Published in NZ Police Facebook and Newshub websites

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Alleged historical sex offending casts ‘dark shadow’ over Auckland’s Dilworth School

School leaders have apologised to former students after six men were arrested on charges of historical sex offending at Dilworth School in Auckland.

During a press conference on Monday afternoon, Dilworth Trust Board chairman Aaron Snodgrass said the school was “truly sorry” for what had allegedly occurred.

Seventeen victims have been identified so far, police said.
Auckland news: in case you missed it

Published in Stuff

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Research article: Recovery processes within peer provision: testing the CHIME model using a mixed methods design

Previous studies have pointed the need for more research, which explores how peer provision brings about change associated with recovery. This study aims to test Leamy’s framework, which consists of five recovery processes: connectedness, hope, identity, meaning and empowerment (also known as the CHIME framework) within the peer provision context.

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By Grace Zeng, Donna Chung
The Journal of Mental Health Training, Education and Practice

04 Sept 2020

Charities Services declines calls to reinvestigate Gloriavale

Alleged abuse, forced separation of families, poor healthcare, unsafe working conditions for young children. A culture of domination and control.

Yet the Charities Services says these allegations from dozens of former Glorivale members are not “oppressive” enough for it to investigate.

Stuff earlier revealed the Gloriavale Leavers Support Trust met with Charities Services last December and presented a letter signed by 35 recent Gloriavale leavers asking the agency to open another investigation.

Published in Stuff

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Victorian government to review laws stopping sexual assault survivors sharing their story

The Victorian government has announced a review of laws preventing sexual assault survivors from speaking publicly about their experience, hours after a campaign to have them repealed was launched.

Changes to the state’s Judicial Proceedings Reports Act introduced in February made it an offence for sexual assault survivors to publish their stories under their real identities in cases where proceedings were pending or a conviction had been recorded, unless they obtained a court order.

Published in SBS

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Gloriavale’s sexual assault policy asks victims to ‘forgive’ abusers, gives offenders three chances to stop

Sexual assault victims at the secretive religious Gloriavale sect are made to meet with their abuser and forgive them – without police being notified.

Gloriavale leaders then give offenders “second and third chances” to stop offending, along with more rounds of forgiveness and repentance meetings when they fail to stop, before leaders will consider kicking them out of the community.

Any offender expelled for sexual offending is told to contact police themselves. Gloriavale leaders would make a complaint to police if they did not.

This is the policy the Gloriavale Christian Community, a registered charity, proposed for dealing with sexual assault complaints, sent to its government watchdog Charities Services in January for “feedback”.

Published in Stuff

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Research article: The Polite Abuser: Using Politeness Theory To Examine Emotional Abuse

Over the last few decades more and more cultural attention has been paid to intimate partner violence, especially emotional abuse. Follingstad, Rutledge, Berg, Hause, and Polek (1990) established that emotional abuse fell into six distinct categories; however, little attention had been paid to how abusers can utilize polite communication to hurt their partner. Equally, Brown and Levinson’s politeness theory (1987) had never been applied to problematic communication until Austin’s (1990) face attack acts model. This study aimed to understand how polite communication can be used as a form of emotional abuse.

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By Cimmiaron Alvarez
March 2020

Mental Health Peer Specialists and Their Vision for a Civil Rights Movement

Many who have mental illness disabilities suffer from isolation and are disconnected from others. They can experience social anxiety, feel nervous, and be unable to connect or make friends. Some have agoraphobia, where they are unable to leave their home. Past traumatic experiences such as domestic violence or sexual abuse also can cause one to not trust others. Living in an isolated area with little mental health resources can also prevent one from finding trustworthy people. With isolation, there is a lack of social support, and opportunities for allyship with others are scarce. Some may not even have support from their families.

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By Neesa Sunar
3 August 2020

Royal Commission launches separate probe into Marylands abuse

Abuse of children at Marylands School in Christchurch from the 1950s to the 1980s will be the subject of a special Royal Commission investigation.

The Royal Commission looking into the abuse of children in state and religious institutions has announced it will inquire separately into events at Marylands.

Marylands was a residential school for boys, many with learning disabilities, run by Catholic brothers of the St John of God order.

The commission is asking for victims, families, staff, witnesses or anyone else with knowledge of abuse at the school to call them confidentially on 0800 222 727.

Published in Stuff

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Social Sector Commissioning, Progress, Principles and Next Steps

The Ministry of Social Development (MSD) has recently released a document on Social Sector Commissioning – Progress, Principles and Next Steps. It does just that – covering commissioning in its broadest sense – “planning, engagement, funding, procurement, monitoring and evaluation that need to be undertaken though third-party providers to ensure people whānau and communities who need support get the support they need.”

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