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False Claims Ruin Lives

False Claims Ruin Lives

Sexual abuse claims must be investigated thoroughly said Heather Roy, ACT's spokesman for ACC.

"Confirmation from Minister Ruth Dyson, that sexual abuse claimants who `discover' they have not been abused after all may not have to pay back the taxpayer funded compensation they received from ACC, highlights a system fraught with loopholes. At the moment accusations are taken at face value and large sums of money handed over.

"As expected the return to ACC lump sum payments for sexual abuse has seen a proliferation of claims. Now that it is not necessary to prove sexual abuse or name the abuser the incentive to make a false claim has increased.

Lynley Hood's book A City Possessed clearly outlines the case of a girl who described sexual abuse to, as she admits, get attention. She was strongly encouraged in her claim for compensation by a psychologist and only started being harassed by the psychology profession when she started to tell the truth.

"ACT says that sexual abuse claims must be investigated thoroughly in the first place to prevent such situations arising.

"Genuine sexual abuse ruins lives but false, unsubstantiated claims ruin the lives of innocent people who never recover from them," said Mrs Roy.

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