Survivors have been calling for an Inquiry for a long time. Survivors are at the centre of this Inquiry.


The Inquiry explained

What is the Royal Commission?

The Royal Commission is an Inquiry into abuse in State care and in faith-based institutions.

The Inquiry will look at what happened to children, young people and vulnerable adults who were in care in New Zealand between 1950 and 1999. They may also listen to experiences before or after these dates.

What does 'in care' include?

A person is in care if they are away from their whānau and family. Some examples

  • In a children's home
  • Fostered or adopted out
  • In a youth justice placement
  • In psychiatric care
  • In any disability care or facility
  • At a health camp
  • At any school or special school
  • At any early childhood centre
  • In police cells, court cells or police custody
  • In transport between different care facilities
  • In a church or with a religious group (can be any religion or faith)

Who is it for?

Anyone who was abused in care as a child, young person or vulnerable adult.

A vulnerable adult has care and support needs e.g. disabled adults, adults who have survived psychiatric institutions.

What is abuse?

Abuse can be physical, sexual, emotional or psychological. Neglect is also a form of abuse.

Why talk to us?

Your experiences will be heard and acknowledged.

You can help us to find out what happened to children and adults in care.

Sharing your experiences could make a difference for those in care in future. We want to stop abuse in care happening.

Private sessions

Survivors can choose to take part in private sessions. This is where they can talk to a Commissioner about their experiences.

Private sessions are not interviews. You can say whatever you want and don't need to answer questions if you don't want to. 

This information will be used to find out the impact of abuse and what changes need to be made.

Have a question?

If you are not sure if your experiences are included, please contact the Royal Commission.
Contact us

Want to be involved?

If you are interested in sharing your experiences, please register with the Royal Commission first.
Register here

Survivor videos

Survivor Advocate Kath Coster says she was just another child in the system and no one wanted to listen to her

Survivor Advocate Toni Jarvis says the Inquiry is a stepping stone on the healing path for him and many other survivors

Survivor Advocates Gina and Tanya Sammons say they are fighting for their sister Alva and for everyone else who has been abused in State Care

Survivor Advocate Tyrone Marks wants the Royal Commission to find out why abuse in care happened? Who was responsible, where did it happen and what are the effects?

Survivor Advocate Eugene Ryder says "the care that was given to us ensured that we weren’t going to participate in society the way everyone else was"

Survivor Advocate Pearl Putaranui says “there’s so much hidden but we’re determined. We’re standing for everyone that’s alive but also the ones that have passed away

Survivor Advocate Jim Goodwin says "My message of hope to survivors is that it’s not a hole. You just step out of it and go tell your story and find the people who love you."

Survivor Advocate Paora Crawford Moyle is using her story to bring light to others

Survivor Advocate Netta Christian says "I’m doing this for my brother, for my special needs birth mother, my darling grandmother and my absent father. The family we were taken from. I’m doing it for them and I hope they are proud of me."

Survivor Advocate Emery Wade says "We were taken and stripped of a lot of things, but most of all, a chance in life to be a normal person like the rest of New Zealanders"

Survivor Advocate Keith Wiffin says "There is hardly anyone in New Zealand who hasn’t been affected by abuse in care – directly or indirectly."

These videos were made in response to requests from survivors to be involved in our communications.

Their views are independent of the Royal Commission.