The Daily Telegraph has reported that the Salvation Army has paid Aus$1.2 million (GBP £640,000) It and has also issued an apology and offered support to 130 victims in relation to abuse perpetrated and orchestrated by Major Lawrence Wilson described by colleagues as a "brutal and evil man".
The details emerging of these cases are truly appalling and the fact that they occurred between 1967 and 1977 at four Salvation Army homes for children in Australia shows how long it can take for victims to receive justice.
Charles Derham, specialist child abuse solicitor for Verisona Law, comments that in his opinion ‘The Salvation Army as an International Organisation may be held accountable for these alleged assaults, their head office being based in the UK.’
The nature of control by the Salvation Army International Headquarters in London in relation to the administrative running of the Australian territory organisations needs to be reviewed. The difficulty with any of these types of cases is that more often than not, individuals, particularly in other countries, do not know they may have legal rights under legislation in the United Kingdom. The small comfort we can take from these cases is that time isn't a barrier to calling individuals and organisations to account.
For many coming forward it can be a daunting process, however acivil claim can help them move forward with their life. It is often the case that bringing a claim can change an individual’s life in a positive way.
Below is a selection of organisations/instutions/bodies we are frequently instructed to pursue.
Private schools, boarding schools, local authority schools, closed schools, hospital schools.
The Scouts Association, St Johns Ambulance, MIND, the Children’s Society, Barnados.
- Football trainers, judo teachers, dance instructors, swimming instructors, holiday activity centres, nurseries, youth clubs.
Local Authorities/Ministry of Defence
- County Councils, Borough Councils, City Councils, ILEA, cadets, navy/ army (forces).
National Health Service Trusts/Commissioning Boards/GPs
- Hospitals, Disability care centres, children’s care providers.
- Convicted perpetrators, acquitted perpetrators.
- Respite care, full time children’s home, part-time children’s homes.
- Roman Catholic Church, United Synagogue, Sisters of Nazareth, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Christian Brothers Order.
- Permanent carers, temporary carers