A report provided a summary from a series of seminars that examined how to prevent child sexual abuse and how better to support children who had experienced it. The report considered intra-familial sexual abuse, peer-to-peer abuse and harmful sexual behaviour, and the prevention of sexual abuse within institutions. It made a range of recommendations to government, including: for greater clarity on information sharing; for greater prioritization of work regarding harmful sexual behaviour; for more specialized training for social workers and teachers; and for better and more consistent support for children and young people who were harmed by abuse.
Source: Recommendations for the Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse and Better Support for Victims, Child Protection All Party Parliamentary Group
An article examined victim and offender identities in discourses around child sexual abuse. It said that policy was constructed around social and political constructions of victimhood and offending behaviour that should be re-examined.
Source: Anne-Marie McAlinden, 'Deconstructing victim and offender identities in discourses on child sexual abuse: hierarchies, blame and the good/evil dialectic', British Journal of Criminology, Volume 54 Number 2
An article examined the findings of a large-scale project on the sexual exploitation of young people, undertaken in Northern Ireland from 2009 to 2011.
Source: Helen Beckett and Dirk Schubotz, 'Young people's self-reported experiences of sexual exploitation and sexual violence: a view from Northern Ireland', Journal of Youth Studies, Volume 17 Number 4
A report examined the responses to child sexual exploitation (CSE) in London. It said that there had been significant developments across many London boroughs, with observable progress in the development of policies and procedures, investment in professional training, and the establishment of multi-agency groups. It said most areas were providing or commissioning some form of support for those at risk of, or experiencing, CSE and there had been progress in targeting prevention, with successful investigations and disruption strategies. The report noted that much work remained to be done by the boroughs, in areas such as: gathering evidence on the nature and extent of the issue in their local area, and working on prevention; pursuing perpetrators; addressing the vulnerability of specific groups, including looked-after children; identifying, assessing, and providing ongoing support for victims; building capacity and implementing policy; and better multi-agency working.
Source: Helen Beckett, Carlene Firmin, Patricia Hynes, and Jenny Pearce, Tackling Child Sexual Exploitation: A study of current practice in London, London Councils
A report provided the findings from a series of focus groups with alleged victims of abuse by the late entertainer, Jimmy Savile. The focus groups examined the issues that prevented them from reporting events to the police at the time, and how the police might improve their management of the reporting process and subsequent interviews and contacts. The report said that there was a wide range of factors influencing non-reporting, but many said they had thought they would not be believed, and many of those who did disclose events at the time had been ignored or ridiculed. The report highlighted the long-term impact of abuse.
Source: Louise Exton and Kamaljit Thandi, Would They Actually Have Believed Me? A focus group exploration of the underreporting of crimes by Jimmy Savile, National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children