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Russell's book lays on a table. The title of the book is at the top and a link to the igff website is written at the bottom.

The Voice of a Survivor

Russell's book lays on a table. The title of the book is at the top and a link to the igff website is written at the bottom.

The Voice of a Survivor by Russell Manser with John Killick is an extraordinary book.

Russell Manser, was a victim of institutional sexual abuse when in jail. He’s made it his life’s work to support survivors through the process of healing and reparation.

Russell’s book covers his life’s story of how a background of crime and abuse can turn into a life of helping thousands of others with similar circumstances, build a better future. 

Russ and John are both reformed bank robbers, once two of Australia’s most notorious outlaws, who have had the chance, and made the choice, to do something better with their lives.

Russ’s company, from where the book takes its name, work to find recognition, apology and reparation for adult victims of childhood sexual abuse. 

A victim of child sexual abuse, Russ spent most of his early life either in jail, escaping from jail, robbing banks to pay for his heroin addiction, and then heading back to jail. In total he spent 23 years of his life behind bars. Russ doesn’t do that anymore, and as the book describes has a remarkable story to tell about how a smart and resourceful kid from the rough end of Sydney, ended up being locked, aged 14 in a jail for adults, in a cell with a paedophile. A necrophile to be more precise, but finer points aside, the tale of a life horribly derailed by abuse and institutional incompetence, to become one of the country’s leaders in the ongoing fight against the scourge of child sexual abuse, is an inspiring one to say the least.

Author John Killick meanwhile used to supplement his modest income as a freelance writer by robbing banks, which in turn paid for a gambling habit of the type where ‘losing everything you have’ meant literally that, and that happened on a number of occasions.

Unimpressed by authority, Killick’s reckless charm and disregard for the rule book, led him into all sorts of trouble, but most famously to pull off one of the most spectacular prison escapes in history, after leaving Silverwater jail without permission from the Governor, via the helicopter hijacked at gunpoint by his girlfriend. A legend in convict circles, John is now a leading crime writer, charity worker and tireless advocate for prison reform.

If it’s a criminal conspiracy you’re looking for, a real and demonic underworld peopled by remorseless and well-organised criminals, then may I direct you to the Vatican in Rome, where you will find all those things operating as a well oiled machine; or perhaps the juvenile justice system in Australia where the large majority of paedophile predators are known to lurk, allowed, with seeming impunity, to act and rarely brought to full justice.

Russ and John may be rogues of a type, classic Aussie villains, but they know that full well, and they own it, tell it straight and turned it around. Now powerful voices for change they ask for a system of compassion not coercion, rehabilitation not incarceration, and one designed to protect and support the abused, not enable and then hide the abuser.

Parts of this text comes from Nick Jordan

Buy The Voice of a Survivor by Russell Manser with John Killick here

 

Other featured books can be found here: Recovering Reading


About the Author : Megan


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