Train club pedophiles (Steamrail in the news)

 
  ML2 Locomotive Driver

Must admit I'm a little shocked! I feel sorry for the members that are honest and decent and do the right thing.

http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/victoria/train-club-pedophiles/story-e6frf7kx-1225918691310

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  Webslave Site Admin

Location: Altona, Melbourne
Note - this article brings out some terrible facts and allegations.  Since it is public domain, we wont be removing it or locking it.

I strongly advise all replies in this thread to be factual, verifiable, and not slanderous or encouraging of vigilantism.

Large warnings will be handed out if you even come close to crossing the line.  For advice on whether your post may or may not be suitable, you're welcome to PM me.

Please bear in mind also that I'm sure there are plenty of good people inside Steamrail too, so when talking about the organisation keep their feelings in mind.
  Colonial boy Junior Train Controller

Location: Central Victorian goldfields
A while ago I read a comment on a  youtube vid about steamrail having pedo's as members. (Search youtube for R761 Grapevine flier)
I hoped it wasn't true as it will do a lot of damage to the orgs reputation. The boy scouts, Catholic church have all been hurt badly by the actions of a few.
  VBAndy Chief Commissioner

Its amusing to me, we've all known about this for years. Admittedly its dwindled in the last decade, but none the less, its always been there. Being personal friends and acquaintances with many SRV members now days, I do believe on the whole they are a good group. Although their reputation is spoiled by the actions of a stupid and mentally ill few.

It is a situation where "guilty until proven otherwise" is a acceptable to me. SRV, along with the other groups, should immediately discontinue membership of the alleged and ban them from the property and tours of all groups.

I can easily see such delicate subjects such as this bringing the remaining mainline preservation scene to its knees, especially if such gospels as the hun have hold of it.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Must admit I'm a little shocked! I feel sorry for the members that are honest and decent and do the right thing.

http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/victoria/train-club-pedophiles/story-e6frf7kx-1225918691310
"ML2"


Wow, this is extremely serious.  A full copy of the article is also at: http://www.railpage.com.au/news-8255.htm

Were the Directors of Steamrail made aware of the allegations at the time?

Regards
Brian
  Railfan9949 Chief Commissioner

Location: Somewhere between Gembrook to Healesville to Seymour to Maldon
May I add my 1c worth to this...

All I can say is as a active volunteer at a number of heritage preservation group and have the likelihood of contacting with minors...

This is why I 100% agree with the state government by having a 'working with children check' card with raises red flags for those whom been alleged to have a dark past and prevents them being able to be put in a position of trust.

I mean it's all good having a 'police checked' or said to have one done... this card takes it to the next level and well it benefits all in my opinion

By the way... Yes I have my card and is carried with me at all times  Wink
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia

This is why I 100% agree with the state government by having a 'working with children check' card with raises red flags for those whom been alleged to have a dark past and prevents them being able to be put in a position of trust.
"Railfan9949"


I can understand why one could form this view, however, lets face it, any organisation who encourages participation by minors in organisational projects should have done due diligence on the people either being employed or involved in the process.  Why do people constantly need to be reminding of doing "what makes sense" by a government?  

Seriously, was it policy at Steamrail to undertake these checks?

Regards
Brian
  heisdeadjim Chief Commissioner

Hang on.

How does one check for a paedophile?
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Hang on.

How does one check for a paedophile?
"heisdeadjim"


You request a police check through the published form.  You then wait for the certificate to be forwarded back to you from the Victorian Police.

However, you are correct in that this process may not be completely reliable.

Regards
Brian
  heisdeadjim Chief Commissioner

What I'm getting at is, most times they're never uncovered until it's far too late, and thus, might have a clean record.

So all a police check will do is to confirm that clean record.

Observation, when you're in a public area with minors. I once had a scenario where a colleague, and a man I used to call friend, was accused and to his credit made full admissions.

We had no idea.
  Peter_J Junior Train Controller

Location: Brisbane
Unfortunately all the Government issued card proves is that the person holding it hasn't been caught.
Don't get me wrong I am all for them and I have one myself and generally the people holding them are good, honest, law abiding citizens.

It would be a great idea for all clubs / societys to have in their rules that you must be a holder of a current "working with children card" to be on a committee or hold a position of responsibility. Maybe even better to have it as a general rule for membership.
  heisdeadjim Chief Commissioner

I'm actually thinking of getting one. People complain about all sorts of crap in this job, it's only a matter of time before some wench accuses me of being a kiddy fiddler.
  wongm GEEWONG

Location: Geelong, Victoria
Unfortunately all the Government issued card proves is that the person holding it hasn't been caught.
Don't get me wrong I am all for them and I have one myself and generally the people holding them are good, honest, law abiding citizens.

It would be a great idea for all clubs / societys to have in their rules that you must be a holder of a current "working with children card" to be on a committee or hold a position of responsibility. Maybe even better to have it as a general rule for membership.
"Peter_J"

The main benefit of making the working with children checks mandatory would be an organisation being able to cover their own backside - if something happens you can always pull the "we don't know anything" argument with good reason. It also allows an organisation to boot people out of their group without fears of making false accusations - the check is a simple pass / fail administered by someone else.

On the other hand, both of these reasons have nothing to do with preventing the 'issues' from occurring in the first place...
  davo_1620 Chief Commissioner

Location: Nearest bottle shop or pub.
The great unmentionable in the hobby
However,whats new?
I used to go on Steam Ranger tours as a young'un, in the end my mother stopped taking me for all the old grubs who wanted you on their knee, or to get you alone.
This was not from the carriage attendants though, from some of the "passengers".
And not to mention various ticket collectors, who wanted you around their house to look at their Edmondson ticket collections, also alone....
I also remember my father going off his nut at one particular "collector" who insisted I showed up sans parents, and being bitterly let down as being too young to know that there was more to bis singles and returns than met the eye.
The same person is alive today, and still in "respected" circles in various public transport interests in one state here in Australia.
There is plenty of "truemors" about "big name" gunzels who are getting on in years, and their "habits" here in NSW.
You only have to go a fringe gunzel inebriation session, and once the alcohol has worked its marvellous effect, listen to the names and stories about some of our photographic cohorts.
While talking to a few senior ARHS people sometime back, it is revealed these individuals are tolerated, even courted for the historical value of their photographic collections, in the hope that they will leave said items for the good of the hobby to the major historical societies.
They close their eyes to their extra curricular activities,
after all, its for the good of the hobby that their efforts of recording the passing rail scene is saved, no matter what they do in their private, or very private lives....
Which for most of us, is just so wrong.
  A no 1 Chief Commissioner

Location: I see a Seagoon
25 years ago a railway group got rid of 2 "stalwarts" of there group when police charged one of them with 75 counts of incident assault of a minor

This individual was outed by the Sun Newspaper at the time and by Derrin Hinch on TV
The group was in the position with the Government the its name was suppressed

I think it dose a great deal of damage to the 99% of members and volunteers who should not be tared with the same brush
  Robuster Chief Train Controller

Location: Werribee
These people are not only involved in these groups but are also in sporting clubs, schools, other hobby groups, the community, etc.

The problem is that all the checks in the world will only notify groups if they have been convicted of an offence, they will not alert a group to the fact that these people have or will do something wrong.

Working with children checks (Vic) are a great tool to confirm that members are above board (They are free where a police check costs $$$$)

The issue I see is that the working with children act is a bit blurry when it comes to these groups. It is not clear on if these group are required to have these checks completed.

Our miniature railway club has taken the step to ensure all our members have this the working with children check completed. This gives the board assurance that we have none of these convicted people in our club.

We are currently working on guidelines that help our members in the correct way to approach and interact with the public.

Even if a group has legal advice that suggests that they don't need members to be checked, any group that opens access to children by its nature of activities (either other members children or the public) should enforce a policy of the checks.

It is the only protection to ensure convicted members are found and removed. It also shows that the group is taking steps to ensure a duty of care.

I would hate to know that a convicted person was a member of mine, and had access to members children or the general public.

*these people means a person who is convicted of a sexual crime*

Rob
  Colonial boy Junior Train Controller

Location: Central Victorian goldfields
Wow, so people knew this was going on?
This has the potential to make riding on a steam train about as desirable as a fatal disease to people with children.
It just needs the news to quite rightfully blow this up to front page, lucky it was a by-line on Sunday
I was a cub/scout in the 60's and had many great experiences,
but when we joined our son up in the early 90's many of our friends raised an eye lid and expresed their concern that we should be so foolhardy.
Isn't the govt the owner of the historic fleet?
What if they said enough is enough and closed newport down?
They should have kicked the wierdo's out long ago!
  J514 Deputy Commissioner

Location: somewhere on the broad gauge
This statement from the Chairman is what worries me :

Quote Mr Dunning said the club had always tried to do the right thing but was being judged by contemporary standards on incidents that were years old because of a vendetta by Mr Parr.

He said the club contacted police instantly when they learnt of Bradley's offending.

"Those blokes have been to court, done their time...Steamrail was upfront about it all," he said. END Quote

I'm sure if these guys robbed Steamrail they would not be aloud back, and for doing this and being convicted their aloud back.
I hope their decisions don't cost them memberships and support.
  A no 1 Chief Commissioner

Location: I see a Seagoon
The ATR as an industry body should do something about this

Any person that comes to the notice of the committee that they have been convicted of this type of offence should be removed as a member under the rules of conduct unbecoming of a member

The ATR should be informed of the persons convicted and banned for life from membership of any affiliate groups of the ATR and stop them running from one group to another

This will cut the cancer the these persons cause in groups
  42101 Banned

Location: Banned
The ATR as an industry body should do something about this

Any person that comes to the notice of the committee that they have been convicted of this type of offence should be removed as a member under the rules of conduct unbecoming of a member

The ATR should be informed of the persons convicted and banned for life from membership of any affiliate groups of the ATR and stop them running from one group to another

This will cut the cancer the these persons cause in groups
"A no 1"


Unfortunatly mate as you would be aware these grubs usualy have powerfull friends in high places that look after them as has been seen worldwide on many occasions.
  brasstrain Banned

Location: Banned
The attitude that a pedophile has served their time and thus it seems is free to mix with children is very disturbing as the majority of these offenders are incurable and will re-offend and that is why they are always banned from having any contact with children.

Whilst you cannot always detect these people, organizations that encourage children to participate in their activities owe a duty of care to ensure volunteers etc have undertaken the necessary police etc clearance checks.

At least then, if one slips through the cracks, then the organisation can defend itself by demonstrating it had a process in place to ensure compliance with the necessary child contact standards.

If they do not, they only have themselves to blame if a incident occurs and then they will have to wear the damage caused and the resultant suspicion that falls on all the members, which is not fair to innocent members.  Members owe it to themselves to check with their peak bodies that these processes are in place.

Steamrail in particular, and all rail enthusiast organisation in general should take urgent steps to ensure they are compliant with the necessary standards in regard to child contact, otherwise this has the potential to blow up in their face big time.  Root out this problem now!!!
  574M White Guru

Location: Shepparton
Firstly, thanks to Webslave for his common sense approach to this topic.

May I add my 1c worth to this...

All I can say is as a active volunteer at a number of heritage preservation group and have the likelihood of contacting with minors...

This is why I 100% agree with the state government by having a 'working with children check' card with raises red flags for those whom been alleged to have a dark past and prevents them being able to be put in a position of trust.

I mean it's all good having a 'police checked' or said to have one done... this card takes it to the next level and well it benefits all in my opinion

By the way... Yes I have my card and is carried with me at all times  Wink
"Railfan9949"


This is the attitude which must prevail.

I am a member of a national organisation which has extensive activities with children and youth in all states. We have a national policy that all who are involved in interactions or activities with children must obtain this "Working with Children Check"or the activity must come to a halt until this is completed.

We define the age range as from 4 years old to 18 years old. Yes, even if you are working with teens, this check must be completed.

I myself have these "Working with Children"checks for three states.

Eventually, this regulatory framework will extend its boundaries beyond its current parameters of outdoor recreation and education to all club and organisation activities in the community which include interaction with children. After all, we keep reading in the papers about clubs, scouts, surf clubs and the like, and other groups children and the youth participate, are places where attempted molestation, abuse and molestation do occur.

I point out to those concerned that Public liability insurance for all our events have an exclusion clause on them, (excludes molestation by you or your membership) ... so prudence has to prevail.
  Valvegear Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Richmond Vic
One of the compelling reasons for vigilance in groups like the ones we belong to, is that the clever paedophiles join up just because of the great opportunities that they perceive.
Unfortunately, this means that you have to watch your fellow members and be aware of any who try to be alone with kids.
The other problem is the, " Oh; old So and So is a great worker, goes to church, does community work etc etc, he'd never do anything wrong."
The clever paedophile works very hard to cultivate this good reputation, precisely because people will think he is above suspicion.
  heisdeadjim Chief Commissioner

The other problem is the, " Oh; old So and So is a great worker, goes to church, does community work etc etc, he'd never do anything wrong."
The clever paedophile works very hard to cultivate this good reputation, precisely because people will think he is above suspicion.
"Valvegear"


Of course, the innocent bloke who goes to church and does community work gets looked at like he's a nasty bastard.
  Valvegear Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Richmond Vic
Now come on, heisdeadjim... you know better than that. You should not take remarks out of context.

It's not every innocent church-going bloke at all.

My point is that the good community worker, church-goer etc  is not an automatic defence of a person under suspicion.

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