A NT toddler who was allegedly raped was given “post-exposure HIV medicine”.
The Northern Territory Children’s Commissioner Colleen Gwynne handed down her report into the alleged sexual abuse of the two-year-old girl last night.
The report comes after the child was assaulted on February 21. The girl and one of her siblings were removed from their mother’s care by the Department of Child Protection South Australia in April, shares 9 news.
A 24-year-old man accused of the rape has been charged with sexual assault. When the child was allegedly raped, one parent was in jail for assaulting the other.
The damning document revealed child protection services had been notified 52 times about “all possible types of harm” in the family dating back to 2002.
Tabled in the Northern Territory parliament last night, the heavily redacted report said the girl, referred to as C1, was given a blood transfusion, surgery and the HIV medicine at Royal Adelaide Women’s and Children’s Hospital.
“This was not the only violence C1 had been exposed to, and experienced in her short life,” the report said.
“C1’s family, including her four siblings, were well known to Territory Families, NT Police, Department of Education and the Department of Correctional Services and other service providers in Tennant Creek.”
The 52 child protection notifications spanning 16 years related to domestic violence, parental substance abuse, children not attending school, neglect, emotional and physical harm and sexual abuse of the children.
The report found the parents had 150 “recorded interactions” with police over the years, with one parent being convicted of aggravated assault eight times and the other having six convictions for drink driving.
The Children’s Commissioner found the girl was at risk of harm and it could have been managed or mitigated. It also found there were “critical intervention points” where child protection services failed the victim and her siblings.
“This appears to be a result of inadequate and ad-hoc provision of services and support, the failure to appropriately assess cumulative harm, a culture of reporting and referrals with no or limited evidence of meaningful actions or outcomes,” the report said.
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