The Morrison Government is ensuring children learn crucial safety skills, including in an online environment, through new funding to The Daniel Morcombe Foundation (the Foundation) drawn from proceeds of crime.
The $3.4 million in funding will deliver the Foundation’s ‘Bright Futures Program’, which aims to prevent, identify and respond to harmful sexual behaviours (including technology assisted harmful sexual behaviour) and child sexual exploitation in pre-teens.
Home Affairs Minister Karen Andrews said this builds on almost $1.8 million in seized proceeds of crime funding provided to the Foundation by the Morrison Government in 2019.
“The program is a national campaign to increase awareness, confidence and the abilities of parents, carers and teachers to identify and respond to child sexual abuse,” Minister Andrews said.
“The Morrison Government is serious about tackling child sexual abuse – and increasing awareness of the dangers is a key step to prevention.
“In the 2021-22 Budget this Government provided close to $60 million to the AFP for new frontline operational activities to keep our children safe.”
The Foundation’s Denise Morcombe said “We thank the Federal Government for funding preventative initiatives and in helping us keep kids safe. We intend to use the funding to identify and prevent harmful sexual behaviours in pre-teens and intervene early, creating Bright Futures for potential perpetrators, victims and their families.”
Bruce Morcombe said “Working in a collaborative way with other industry professionals and champions of child protection will achieve the best outcomes in protecting children from abuse and harm.”
Speaker of the House of Representatives and Federal Member for Fisher the Hon Andrew Wallace MP said the Foundation provided crucial services nationally and for the local community.
“Bruce and Denise Morcombe have shaped the national conversation around child safety for over a decade.
“Through the Daniel Morcombe Foundation, they continue to equip families, schools, and whole communities with the knowledge and tools they need to keep our kids safe.
“This new funding package is good news for families on the Sunshine Coast and across the country.”
Special Envoy for the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games and Member for Fairfax the Hon Ted O’Brien MP welcomed the additional funding, also going towards several new staff for the Foundation.
“Bruce and Denise Morcombe have turned an unthinkable, personal tragedy into a vehicle for positive change across Australia,” Mr O’Brien said.
“The Daniel Morcombe Foundation is tirelessly tackling the insidious issues that surround child exploitation and they have become a leading voice for advocacy and education in this space.
“The ‘Bright Futures Program’ will play an important role in educating children to safely manage the dangers that exist in the physical and online world.”
Since 2013, the Coalition has provided funding of more than $209 million under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, to Commonwealth law enforcement agencies to support key crime prevention and law enforcement initiatives.
Under the Coalition Government, funding to the Australian Federal Police has increased to over $1.7 billion. Only the Morrison Government can ensure strong support for our law enforcement agencies to keep Australians safe. Seizures and restrictions of illicit goods form the basis of proceeds of crime funding streams, which goes back into community programs like to The Daniel Morcombe Foundation.