Article

The economic cost of violence against children and young people

Advocate for Children and Young People

The Office of the Advocate for Children and Young People (ACYP) commissioned Deloitte Access Economics to provide updated estimates for the economic impact of violence against children and young people in NSW and Australia.

In 2016-17, there were an estimated 154,302 cases of violence against children and young people aged 0-24 years in NSW costing a total of $11.2 billion. Of this total, approximately $2.3 billion was borne by NSW state government departments, $600 million by the Federal government and $8.2 billion by individuals and the broader NSW community.

Violence against children and young people aged 0-24 years are pervasive child protection, public health and human rights issues. According to the World Health Organization, for infants and younger children, violence mainly involves child abuse and maltreatment (i.e. physical, sexual and emotional abuse and neglect), and usually byparents, caregivers or other authority figures. In recent years, the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse found that tens of thousands of children have been sexually abused in many Australian institutions, including where they reside or attend for educational, recreational, sporting, religiousor cultural activities.

As children reach adolescence, violence usually takes the form of peer violence (including bullying and gang violence) and intimate partner violence in addition to child maltreatment.

There has also been an increasing awareness of other types of emotional abuse such as cyber-bullying, witnessing of acts of violence or living in a home where violence is inflicted upon others. Research suggests that these all potentially have long-lasting impacts on a child or young person’s social development, physical health and mental wellbeing.

In light of this, the Office of the Advocate for Children and Young People (ACYP) commissioned Deloitte Access Economics to provide updated estimates for the economic impact of violence against children and young people in NSW and Australia. It is anticipated that this analysis will support the ACYP and broader NSW Government in investment decisions to make NSW a safer state for children and young people. While the analysis was based on a model developed for NSW Family and Community Services in 2017, this is one of the first studies that estimates the economic cost of violence up to 24 years of age.

For more information visit The Office of the Advocate for Children and Young People at: https://www.nowandforever.nsw.gov.au/cost

Economic Cost of Violence Against Children and Young People - June 2019
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