Allegations of Abuse in Institutions

Salvation Army Homes - Main Index

Index 2003 (Sept-Dec)

Waikato Times
September 3 2003

City protest against Sallies to continue
by Tracey Cooper

A Hamilton man who staged a two-hour protest outside the Salvation Army church on Sunday plans to do it again this weekend.

Peter Murphy said he had received a lot of public support during his protest against alleged abuse of children in Salvation Army care.

Mr Murphy's complaint is one of 36 cases of alleged abuse being investigated by the Salvation Army.

The cases came to light following the screening of a documentary of similar cases in Australia.

Mr Murphy said he had received dozens of telephone calls since his plea in last week's Times for other alleged abuse victims to come forward.

"I've had calls from all over the North Island," he said.

"One was from a 74-year-old woman who still has trouble sleeping because of memories of things that happened to her."

Mr Murphy spent 10 years at the Salvation Army's Whatman House, near Masterton, and said physical abuse of children was a common occurrence.

He was setting up a database to keep in contact with the people who had contacted him.

Salvation Army spokesman Alistair Herring said occasional complaints were still "trickling in" but were being outweighed by calls supporting the organisation.

"There are two sides to this. We've got a lot of calls from people wanting to tell good stories," he said.

"That's gratifying and helpful."

Mr Herring said the Salvation Army would be responding to Mr Murphy's complaint.

He said two of eight historical claims of abuse against the Salvation Army were close to resolution, leaving it with six old cases and 28 new cases.

Ten of the new cases relate to the former boys' home at Hodderville, southwest of Putaruru.