CHILD PROTECTION PRACTITIONERS ASSOCIATION PRACTICE PAPER
Thursday 30 September 2021 from 5.30 PM (location Toowoomba)
Topic : Lyndal – being a witness in a sexual assault matter
About this paper:
Many survivors of child sexual abuse don’t ever come forward to tell their story. Others suffer guilt and shame as a result of the abuse and take many years to speak. There has been much talk, particularly in recent years, of the difficulties faced by survivors as they go through the legal process – both criminal and civil. In going through the process, they must revisit the abuse and revisit the trauma time after time. They often suffer from significant mental health issues before they even begin to give their evidence. As if the process of giving their evidence and telling their story in Court is not difficult enough, they are then cross examined.
Lyndal is a survivor of childhood abuse who has told her story. Lyndal tells her story to the police as a child. On the day he is to appear in Court, the perpetrator commits suicide. Many years later as an adult, Lyndal gives evidence in Court in a civil matter, forced to tell it in an extremely difficult setting. Her story is one of trauma, desperation to be believed, and fighting her way through the system. Please join us in hearing Lyndal as she reflects on telling her story as both a child and an adult.
Lyndal is a 43 year old survivor of sexual assault and rape. In 1990 she was assaulted by the boarding school master where she lived at the school formerly known as the Toowoomba Preparatory School, now the Toowoomba Anglican School. As a result of the abuse Lyndal suffers from PTSD, Anxiety and Depression and other mental health issues. She suffered in the belief that the school did not believe her for 11 years until she went to Court in 2001. She had to relive the abuse all over again in the witness box as an adult. Lyndal considers herself one of the lucky ones – she has survived to tell her story and to give others hope. Hope that they too can seek justice and, achieve justice.
Chair: Debbie Jones
Queensland Police Service, Manager, Policy and Programs Unit
Member Content: Video