3rd June 2015

Announcement on Child Sexual Abuse Inquiry

Speaking about the inquiry into child sexual abuse Anne Longfield, Children’s Commissioner for England said:

“Child sexual abuse is one of the most critical modern day issues that needs to be addressed. I am determined to tackle it through my important inquiry and have asked Jon Brown at NSPCC to co-chair it with me. He has taken over from the former chair, Sue Berelowitz.

“We know that 600,000 children in England have been or are currently being sexually abused, the vast majority in the family context. There is evidence that many are not receiving the vital help and support they need, nor being made safe. We are determined to make sure they are by learning from the experiences of children and adult survivors. We will publish the ground-breaking evidence and findings of the inquiry in the autumn, alongside recommendations to make sure children are better protected.”

Edward Timpson, Minister for Children and Families, said:

“Child sexual abuse is a truly abhorrent crime. Tackling all forms of abuse and exploitation is a priority for this Government, and it remains essential that how we address this serious issue is underpinned by robust evidence about how to prevent such crimes happening in the first place. I welcome the ongoing work of this important inquiry and look forward to the findings in the autumn.”

Donald Findlater, Lucy Faithfull Foundation said:

“The Lucy Faithfull Foundation works exclusively to protect children from sexual abuse. We work with victims, offenders and their families as well as with the professionals involved. This inquiry is desperately needed if future generations are to be spared the terrible harm that too many children have suffered in the past. We are honoured to be a part of such vital work.”

Sir Martin Narey said:

“I am delighted to see the new Children’s Commissioner reasserting the priority she intends to give to combatting child sexual abuse. We need a new and critical assessment of where we can be most effective in addressing an issue which is more serious than any of us anticipated a few years ago. I have every confidence that under Anne Longfield’s leadership we will make progress.”

Tim Loughton MP said:

“The Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse set up by the Children’s Commissioner has played a major part in exposing the extent of this cancer in our society and more importantly galvanizing the relevant agencies into tackling it at source. It played a major part in reinforcing the extent of the problem with Government and helping formulate the Chid Sexual Exploitation Action Plan launched in 2011 which has down so much to coordinate a robust response by police, social services, health and others working together. The approach of the Inquiry in leaving no stone unturned, however shocking the results, has been a key factor in its effectiveness with important results still to come.”

Gabrielle Shaw, Chief Executive, National Association for People Abused in Childhood said:

“As a national organisation for people abused in childhood we know the pernicious damage that sexual abuse can cause throughout childhood and which often remains with survivors for life. This important inquiry offers a unique opportunity to ensure survivors’ experiences are heard and make a positive difference to eradicating child abuse today.”

Annie Hudson, Chief Executive of The College of Social Work said:

“We need to ensure that the inquiry completes its very critical work. We believe that child sexual abuse in family environments has sometimes been overlooked as an issue. The work of this inquiry presents us with a very important opportunity for understanding much better the scale of the issue and how, as a society and as professionals, we can better help and protect children and young people.”

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