National Redress Scheme
Brisbane Grammar School applied for entry to the National Redress Scheme on 20 August 2019 and the Minister for Social Services formally declared the School as a participating institution under the Scheme on 23 April 2020.
While the School has been operating its own Redress Scheme since 2000, the National Redress Scheme provides an additional path for those who have experienced abuse in the past to seek redress independent of the School. The National Redress Scheme provides counselling, monetary payments, as well as a direct personal response by the School if the person chooses.
Under the rules of the National Redress Scheme, any application for redress must be lodged directly with the Scheme itself.
Information about the National Redress Scheme, how to make an application and the support services available in Queensland and Australia-wide can be found on their website at www.nationalredress.gov.au or by calling the hotline 1800 737 177.
Royal Commission and BGS Redress Scheme
In November 2012 the Federal Government announced the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
Brisbane Grammar School fully supported the important work of the Royal Commission in giving voice to those who have suffered abuse, identifying the causes of such abuse and recommending action now and for the future.
The public hearings in Brisbane canvassed significant amounts of oral evidence which, combined with documentary evidence provided, were considered by the Royal Commission. Brisbane Grammar School was the subject of Case Study 34, click here to view that report and the Royal Commission's findings.
The School is committed to helping those who have suffered sexual abuse in the past. To that end, we encourage anyone who may have suffered past sexual abuse to contact the School as provided below.
Responding to past abuse
Since 2000 Brisbane Grammar School has fully acknowledged, and has been responding to, the tragic legacy of abuse committed against students in the 1970s and 1980s by the School Counsellor Kevin Lynch.
We reiterate our unreserved apology to them for what happened and the impact these events have had on them.
From the very first days that the School was made aware of what had occurred our leadership put in place our own redress scheme which has provided counselling and psychological care, personal apology from the Chairman and Headmaster, as well as monetary payments.
So far the Scheme operated by the School has finalised settlements with more than 130 survivors.
While we recognise that we are powerless to undo the past, we are and remain committed to responding to those who experienced abuse with care and compassion.
Our response to survivors and victims of Kevin Lynch since 2000 both predates and mirrors the later recommendations of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
A central element of the BGS Scheme is that we require any person coming forward to be independently legally represented, at BGS cost, to ensure that their interests are protected. This means that they have independent legal advice on their settlement, its terms and its quantum, before it is concluded.
Brisbane Grammar School accepts that survivors who suffered abuse may not wish to deal direct with the School. Therefore, Brisbane Grammar School has set up a Redress Office, managed by an independent Redress Coordinator (a Doctor of Psychology) to coordinate the ongoing counselling support and assistance provided to those who have been abused by Kevin Lynch.
The Redress Office has a dedicated phone number - 0401 345 356 - has been set up for this specific purpose. A qualified practitioner will be available to speak to you during business hours, or leave a message and your call will be returned as soon as possible. Alternatively please contact the Redress Office via email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you require emergency assistance after hours, please contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or visit their website. You may also like to seek support from your GP, another care provider, or proceed to the emergency department of your closest hospital.
Responding to other abuse
If anyone wishes to bring a complaint of abuse against any member of BGS staff, past or present, they may do so in any of the following ways:
- Contacting the police or other relevant authority in your state
- Contact the School directly on (07) 3834 5200.
Please note, when children are involved, the School has mandatory reporting provisions to the police or relevant state authority.
Keeping the Brisbane Grammar School community informed
Our priority has been to communicate proactively and openly with our BGS community on these important issues including the operation of our Redress Scheme as well as our response to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. You can read our communications on these matters below.
Brisbane Grammar School Policies
- Australian Psychological Society – Find a Psychologist Service
- Beyond Blue
- MensLine Australia
- Mental Health Professionals Network
- Relationships Australia Queensland
- Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse: Support Services
- Sexual Assault Support Services Inc