Southern survivors of sexual abuse are being turned away for important support at an alarming rate, leaving them devastated and re-traumatised, an advocate claims.
The Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) has come under fire for disestablishing its Wellington-based sensitive claims unit, which dealt with physical or mental injuries following criminal acts, including sexual violence, in favour of regional case managers.
There have also been concerns about the number of survivors having claims declined.
ACC says it has not changed how it assesses sensitive claims, and that it has increased the number of specialist staff working one-on-one with survivors.
Male Survivors Otago manager Michael Chamberlain said he was aware of at least four men in recent months who had had claims either denied or downgraded by ACC.
They’re devastated, basically they don’t know where to go.Michael Chamberlain