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Welcome to the Defence Abuse Response Taskforce

The Taskforce was established to assess and respond to individual cases of sexual and other abuse in Defence, occurring before 11 April 2011. This means that the fundamental work of the Taskforce is to determine, in close consultation with complainants, the most appropriate outcome in individual cases.

The deadline for providing all relevant information and documentation to the Taskforce has now passed subject to the exception explained in the next paragraph. If you missed the cut-off date for making a complaint to the Taskforce, you can no longer register a complaint with the Taskforce.

The Taskforce is continuing to accept complaints from women who experienced sexual abuse at the Australian Defence Force Academy during the period 1991 and 1998, in accordance with its Amended Terms of Reference issued on 15 December 2014 which are available on the About us page of this website. The Government has put in place a deadline of 15 September 2015 for accepting any new registrations from women whose abuse falls within this category.

Anyone who is not able to make a complaint to the Taskforce can still make use of other external mechanisms. Information about options that might be available to you can be found on the Frequently asked questions page of this website.

The Amended Terms of Reference put in place a deadline of 30 June 2015 to complete assessments and delivery of a number of outcomes, being Reparation Payments, referrals to civilian police and referrals to the Chief of the Defence Force for possible administrative or disciplinary action. The Defence Abuse Restorative Engagement Program and national Defence Abuse Counselling Program are not subject to the June deadline and will continue in 2015-16.

The Government has now issued further Amended Terms of Reference which will come into effect on 1 July 2015. These Amended Terms of Reference extend the Taskforce to 31 December 2015 to ensure that it is able to continue to deliver remaining outcomes to complainants. The new Amended Terms of Reference are available on the About us page of this website.

Complainants who are currently being assisted to access outcomes available to them through the Taskforce may be contacted by their Case Coordinator to discuss progressing decisions and referrals in order to meet the 30 June 2015 deadline. Please be assured that you will have the opportunity to be considered for the outcomes available to you, although you may be asked to assist the Taskforce to finalise the steps in this process by the end of June.

Please contact the Taskforce via the free-call Hotline on 1800 424 991 or at DART@ag.gov.au if you have any queries or concerns, or if your contact details have changed since you made your complaint.

Messages from the Chair of the Taskforce

On 2 September 2015, the Chair of the Taskforce, Robert Cornall AO, released a message from the Chair relating to the completion of Elizabeth Broderick’s term as Sex Discrimination Commissioner:

On 12 July 2015, the Chair of the Taskforce, Robert Cornall AO, released a message from the Chair relating to the deadline for women who experienced sexual abuse at ADFA during the period 1991 and 1998 to make a complaint to the Taskforce:

Previous messages from the Chair of the Taskforce are available for download below:

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  • Register allegations of sexual abuse at ADFA by 15 September 2015
    Women who experienced sexual abuse at the Australian Defence Force Academy during the period 1991 and 1998 have until 15 September 2015 to make a complaint to the Taskforce. To register a complaint falling within this category, please see the Contact us page of this website.
  • Report on progress, operations and future structure released
    On 30 July 2015, the Taskforce released its Report on progress, operations and future structure. A copy of this Report can be found on the Reports page of this website.
  • Amended Terms of Reference released by the Government
    The Government has now issued further Amended Terms of Reference extending the Taskforce to 31 December 2015. This extension will ensure that the Taskforce is able to continue to deliver remaining outcomes to complainants. The Amended Terms of Reference are available on the About Us page of this website and will come into effect on 1 July 2015.