It can take a lot for a survivor of sexual assault to reach out for help, and when they do, they definitely shouldn’t have to jump through hoops to prove they’re worthy.
Unlike other injuries covered by ACC, survivors of sexual assault are required to go through lengthy assessments to get ongoing support. As a result, just 32% of people who go to ACC for help following sexual violence are successful. It's clear the sensitive claims process isn't working.
Once a survivor decides to go to ACC for help, first they need to find an available ACC accredited therapist. This can take months, and when once they find someone they then have to go through hours of lengthy assessment to prove to ACC that they should get help. The assessment delves into all the traumatic events in the survivor’s life to decide if ACC will accept their claim. And to have a claim accepted, ACC needs to be confident the sexual violence was the cause of a mental injury. Instead of looking for ways to help a survivor, this process looks for any reason not to.
It’s no surprise that many people don’t make it through this process. It can take long enough to find an available therapists in the first place and once they do, many report the assessment in itself as being re-traumatising.
It’s clear the ACC’s sensitive claims process is broken.
We’re calling on Minister for ACC, Carmel Sepuloni, to support survivors by doing away with assessments for sensitive claims and provide mental health support for all sexual assault victims instead of making people jump through legal hoops. By doing this, by believing survivors, those who need it will be able to get help.
ACC was intended to be there for anyone in times of unexpected need. Let’s rebuild ACC so it helps, not harms.
Add your name and help us use our collective strength to show Minister Sepuloni that she has wide public support to make this important improvement to ACC.
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