Abuse Survivors Blog

Sexual consent and “positions of trust”

Written by Tracey Emmott on 30 Nov 2018

Editor's note: This post was originally written in 2017 and has since been refreshed for relevance and accuracy.

The age of consent for sex

In England and Wales the age of sexual consent is 16 for both men and women. The age of consent is the same regardless of the gender or sexual orientation of a person and whether the sexual activity is between people of the same or different gender.

Read More...

Abuse cases in Coventry Children's Homes

Written by Gabrielle Litson on 25 Oct 2018

In 2017, eight care workers were charged after a police investigation into historical child abuse at a children’s home in Coventry.

These men were accused of a total of 29 offences (which included counts of child cruelty, indecent assaults and one rape of a child) against 15 children whilst working at Wisteria Lodge between 1981-1997.

Read More...

Protecting the victim's identity in child abuse compensation claims

Written by Donna Hughes on 31 Aug 2018

In the wake of Cliff Richard’s successful court appeal against the BBC, it is right to revisit how victims of sexual abuse can be protected in law from having their identities revealed. There has been much debate over the years on press freedom to report on cases which are thought to be of public interest and the rights of the parties involved in those legal cases.

Read More...

Communication support in court for victims of child abuse

Written by Tracey Emmott on 03 Aug 2018

A case in which we represented a victim of abuse in a compensation claim, which later proceeded to the criminal trial of their abuser illustrates the valuable and important role a Registered Intermediary can have in the justice process. 

Read More...

Abuse Inquiry update: What changes can we expect?

Written by Toslima Islam on 14 Jun 2018

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) was set up by the then Home Secretary, Theresa May, after apparent institutional failures surrounding non-recent child sexual abuse.

Read More...

Psychiatric harm in child abuse cases

Written by Toslima Islam on 27 Apr 2018

The most common and significant effect of childhood sexual abuse is psychological rather than physical harm.

When a child suffers sexual abuse and has not been able to disclose it for various reasons they can go into adulthood with mental health difficulties, simply because it has not been possible for them to process the traumatic events that have happened to them.

Read More...

10 reasons why it's difficult to disclose childhood sexual abuse

Written by Tracey Emmott on 12 Apr 2018

It is common knowledge that the English legal system is not overly sympathetic to adults seeking justice for childhood sexual abuse in the civil courts. The law in England and Wales is such that time to bring a civil compensation claim expires on the 21st birthday of anyone who was sexually abused as a child.

Read More...

Institutional abuse in the Chichester Diocese 

Written by Tracey Emmott on 23 Mar 2018

The Church of England is currently suffering the discomfort of a public spotlight of IICSA – the largest public inquiry ever undertaken in the UK.  The C of E is not alone in its scrutiny, the Roman Catholic Church having already been the subject of IICSA, together with several other institutions including local authority children’s homes.

Read More...

The UK laws surrounding Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)

Written by Toslima Islam on 09 Mar 2018

What is it and why is it done?

Female Genital Mutilation (‘FGM’) is a cultural practice which involves the total or partial removal of the female external genitalia for non-medical reasons, normally with the aim of inhibiting a female’s sexual feelings. It is also known as female circumcision or ‘cutting’ and is common in parts of Africa but also takes place in the Middle East and Asia. It is usually carried out on girls before they reach puberty but is known to be done on girls as young as 4 years old. The procedure is extremely painful and can cause long term health problems such as:

Read More...

Can we put an end to institutional abuse in boarding schools?

Written by Tracey Emmott on 21 Feb 2018

The concept of sending one’s child away to a school where they also live is thought to be something quintessentially British. 

Read More...