Coincidence. It’s a word that is treated with extreme suspicion in Canberra. And rightly so. It cropped up at a Senate Community Affairs Legislation Committee public hearing in Melbourne last week. We are looking at the Commonwealth Redress Scheme for Institutional Child Sexual Abuse Bill.

Late last week Victoria and New South Wales came on board. SA this week. The ACT and the NT will be forced by the Commonwealth to participate and the other states must be shamed into it. How, legally, will the royal commission’s recommendations be instituted? How will victims be financially compensated and counselled? How will the states and institutions be forced to pay, if, and when, they sign up?