We have recently been instructed by a victim of a former organist and choir master Neil Turner who was sexually assaulted by him over a period of many years.
One consequence of lockdown has been having time to watch some excellent TV programmes.
Netflix’ double ‘Epstein: Filthy Rich’ and ‘Athlete A’ are disturbing documentaries both detailing the sexual exploitation of girls and young women by men of significant power.
Editor's note: This post was originally written in August 2017, and has since been updated and republished for accuracy purposes.
The virtual world which most of us now inhabit on an almost 24 -7 basis has transformed our lives, introducing many benefits which have been positively life changing. According to an article by Finder, as of 2019, 79% of adults now own a smart phone. Also as of 2019, OFCOM reported that 9 in 10 5-15 year olds use any device to go online.
And, with The Guardian recently reporting that most children own a smartphone by the age of seven, it's clear that people of all ages have access to the online world.
Just before lockdown in the UK on 23rd March a global telecommunications company reported a surge by up to 50% in internet usage in some European countries.
In the UK, of their 18 million customers an increase of data usage of 30% was reported. One can only imagine what the figures are like today, as we approach our sixth week on lockdown.
Speaking out for the first time about childhood sexual abuse is hard enough. When a person who has been abused feels compelled to do something about it, it can be difficult to know where to start. All kinds of worries inhibit a person from coming forward. Fear is a huge factor - including a fear they will not be believed, a fear of retribution by their abuser, and a fear of what it might cost them, both emotionally and financially.
Once again the Church of England is suffering the discomfort of more public spotlight following the airing of ‘Exposed: The Church’s Dark Secret’ on BBC 2 this week. The documentary details the former Bishop of Lewes’s predatory behaviour towards young, vulnerable boys and men, most of whom had joined his religious Order, and the church’s wholly negligence response to numerous complaints about him over many years.
The recent storyline in Emmerdale of a female teacher grooming and then sexually abusing a teenage boy throws light on cultural perceptions of women paedophiles, and how these differ from perceptions of male perpetrators of sexual offences against children.
Image based sexual abuse is the non consensual making and / or sharing of nude or intimate private photographs or videos.
Social media outlets make easy platforms for exploitation, whether it be in the form of:
While the death of an abuser can create significant hurdles when considering legal options, a case our client has recently won demonstrates that pursuing justice in the form of a civil compensation claim is not always out of the question.
For anyone who has suffered sexual abuse it may take years before they have the courage to come forward to speak of the abuse to their friends and family or even the police.
You may feel deeply embarrassed and ashamed to discuss what happened to you.