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Recent Press Releases and Reports: keeping up in 2020 – Helen Masson

These press releases and reports have been published in the last few months. I hope they are of interest to the membership but the editorial team welcomes information from NOTA members about developments that have been missed and that should be items for inclusion in the next newsletter. Please contact the editorial team at notanews@nota.co.uk

Child Sexual Abuse in the Context of Children’s Homes and Residential Care.
Independent Inquiry Into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), Claire Soares, Grace Ablett, Beth Mooney and Sophia King, London 2019

Format: Online report
Summary: Examines what victims and survivors have shared with the Truth Project about their experiences of child sexual abuse in children’s homes and residential care in England and Wales between the 1940s and 2000s. Looks at the context and nature of the child sexual abuse; the experiences of disclosure and responses by institutions; and the impacts of the child sexual abuse. Findings from analysis of the experiences of 191 individuals include: victims and survivors typically described disrupted, chaotic and, in some cases neglectful childhoods; just under half of participants told someone about the sexual abuse at the time it was happening. The Truth Project is part of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA).


Children Outside the United Kingdom: Phase 2 Investigation Report, IICSA, 2020

The full scale of the sexual abuse of children by UK nationals and residents outside of the UK is unknown but it is extensive. Between 2013 and 2017, 361 UK nationals requested consular assistance abroad after being arrested for child sex offences, 78 of which were in 2017. British offenders figure highly in prevalence surveys and there have been numerous convictions. Inevitably, these represent a fraction of the numbers of offenders and offences. Moreover, sexual abuse of children abroad does not have to take place abroad. It has been estimated that some 80,000 people in the UK may present a sexual threat to children online, increasingly through live-streaming. This activity targets the poorest and most vulnerable children in many parts of the world.

This investigation focusses on responses by institutions in England and Wales to the sexual abuse of children outside the UK:

  • civil orders
  • the prosecution in England and Wales of UK nationals and residents who sexually abuse children whilst abroad.

The report can be accessed at:


Allegations of Child Sexual Abuse Linked to Westminster
An investigation report from the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), 2020.

The Executive Summary states: ‘This investigation concerns institutional responses to allegations of child sexual abuse and exploitation involving persons of public prominence who were associated with Westminster. Westminster is defined in this report as the centre of the United Kingdom’s government, government ministers and officials, as well as Parliament, its members and the political parties represented there.

Seven topics were covered in evidence. These were: police misconduct, political parties, whips’ offices, the Paedophile Information Exchange, prosecutorial decisions, the honours system, and current safeguarding policies in government, Parliament and the political parties’.

For the full report, go tohttps://www.iicsa.org.uk/publications/investigation/westminster 

An Explorative Study on Perpetrators of Child Sexual Exploitation Convicted Alongside Others

Dr Sarah Senker, Matthew Scott and Dr Lucy Wainwright

IICSA, May 2020

This report is based on interviews with perpetrators of child sexual exploitation in organised networks. This was carried out in recognition of a relative lack of primary research on this emerging topic. Historically, work has tended to focus on perpetrators of sexual offending (not child sexual exploitation). Where child sexual exploitation was the focus, work has centred around lone perpetrators and online offending. There have recently been a small number of studies looking at groups of child sexual exploitation perpetrators, but the topic still warrants further research.

The aims of the current research were to:

  • further an understanding of the motivations and modus operandi of perpetrators of child sexual exploitation who operate in organised networks; and
  • identify interventions and approaches that could prevent or disrupt perpetrators of child sexual exploitation who operate in organised networks.

Summary and full reports are available at:


Child Sexual Abuse in Custodial Institutions

Dr Andrea Darling et al., Independent Inquiry Child Sexual Abuse, 2020 

The Truth Project is a core part of the Inquiry, alongside public hearings and research. It was set up to hear and learn from the experiences of victims and survivors of child sexual abuse in England and Wales. It offers victims and survivors an opportunity to share experiences of child sexual abuse. By describing their experiences, Truth Project participants make an important contribution to the work of the Inquiry. With the consent of participants, the Inquiry uses Truth Project information in a variety of ways, including for ongoing research and data analysis carried out by the Inquiry’s Research Team.

This is the third research publication in a series of thematic reports examining the experiences of victims and survivors of child sexual abuse as shared with the Truth Project. It details the research findings in relation to experiences of abuse in custodial institutions.

The full report and a summary report are available at:


Truth Project Dashboard: June 2016 – December 2019

Independent Inquiry Into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), 2020

This dashboard uses information from the personal accounts of victims and survivors shared with the Inquiry between June 2016 and December 2019. The Inquiry has only used information from sessions where the victim and survivor shared their own account, and where they chose to share their account for research purposes. Victims and survivors can share as much or as little as they want about their experience. There are no specific questions. This means that participants do not always provide information for each area reported in this dashboard. Findings cannot be applied to the general population of victims and survivors of child sexual abuse.

To access the latest Dashboard data, go to:


Victims and Survivors Forum Workshops on Accessing Records

Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, 2020

Members of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse’s Victims and Survivors Forum were asked about their experiences of accessing childhood records, the barriers they faced and any impacts.

Fifty-eight Forum members discussed the issues at a series of events around England and Wales in November 2019. A further 25 members completed an online questionnaire. This report, which can be accessed via the link below, summarises the key themes that emerged from Forum members’ responses, including recommendations to ensure victims and survivors have better experiences in the future.


Learning about Online Sexual Harm.
International Centre, University of Bedfordshire and Independent Inquiry Into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) 

Publication details: London: Independent Inquiry Into Child Sexual Abuse, 2019

Format: Online report
Summary: Explores children’s and young people’s perspectives on online sexual harm and the education they receive on this in school. Findings from surveys with pupils aged 10-18 in England and Wales include: Nine per cent of secondary-school aged participants said they had learnt about online sexual harm from personal experience; almost 91 per cent of primary school and 85 per cent of secondary school aged respondents said it was their own responsibility to keep themselves safe online.

To access the report, go to:

Government Response to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse

Ministry of Justice, 27 February 2020

This paper sets out the Government response to Recommendation 17 of the IICSA Interim Report, which states “The Chair and Panel recommend that the Department of Health and Social Care, the Department for Education, the Ministry of Justice and the Home Office work together to establish current levels of public expenditure, and the effectiveness of that expenditure on services for child victims and adult survivors of child sexual abuse in England.”

The following link provides access to the paper:


Independent Assurance Review of the Effectiveness of Multi-Agency Responses to Child Sexual Exploitation in Greater Manchester

16 January 2020

Malcolm Newsam and Gary Ridgway

In July 2017, the BBC broadcast The Betrayed Girls, a documentary about child sexual exploitation (CSE) within Greater Manchester.

In September 2017, the Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, in his role as Police and Crime Commissioner, commissioned an independent assurance exercise to explore the current and potential future delivery model of the response to child sexual exploitation (CSE) across Greater Manchester, in light of a review of the decision to close down Operation Augusta (an investigation into CSE in South Manchester in 2004/05).

The resulting report can be accessed at:


The Multi-agency Response to Child Sexual Abuse in the Family Environment: Prevention, Identification, Protection and Support.

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Probation, Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services, Care Quality Commission and OFSTED, 2020

Format: Online report
The report summarises findings from the joint targeted area inspections of multi-agency responses to child sexual abuse in the family environment carried out between September 2018 and May 2019. Findings include: there is a lack of clarity about what constitutes sexual abuse of children; professionals do not understand the relationship between viewing child abuse images and the direct abuse of children well enough; and recognising the signs of sexual abuse remains a challenge.

The full report is available at:


The Multi-agency Response to Child Sexual Abuse in the Family Environment: CASPAR briefing.
NSPCC, 2020

Format: Online report
The briefing outlines findings from inspections of how agencies respond to child sexual abuse in the family environment in England. Findings cover: prevention; identification; protection of children when abuse has occurred; and support for children and families.

The briefing is available at:


Child Sexual Abuse in Schools: Lessons from History, Guidance for the Future

David Smellie, et al.

Independent Schools Council, 2020

This guidance has been based on the thoughts of some leading practitioners who have been involved in looking at cases of non-recent child sexual abuse in schools with a view to drawing out some of the recurring themes which schools today can use to stress-test their current operations and culture.

To access the report, go to:


Child Sexual Abuse: Learning from Case Reviews

NSPCC, 2020

This briefing is based on case reviews published since 2017 where children were victims of sexual abuse. It summarises and highlights the learning contained in the published reports. The children in these case reviews became the subject of reviews following:

  • serious harm resulting from sexual abuse
  • concerns about how agencies had acted to safeguard the child.

To access the review, go to:



Child Sexual Abuse in England and Wales: Year Ending March 2019

Office for National Statistics, 16 January 2020

This statistical report on child sexual abuse in England and Wales, brings together a range of different data sources from across government and the voluntary sector.

The data can be accessed at:



Improving your Data on Child Sexual Abuse

Centre for Expertise in Child Sexual Abuse, Kairika Karsna, 2019

To improve the quality and consistency of the data on child sexual abuse (CSA) that organisations collect in the delivery of their services, the CSA Centre has developed a core dataset – the CSA data collection template – which sets out a recommended list of information that organisations responding to CSA should be collecting, and how they should be recording it. The template can be adopted by organisations in the statutory sector (e.g. police, health or local authority children’s services) and in the voluntary and private sectors.

It may also be useful for agencies dealing with wider issues, such as criminal exploitation of children, if CSA – including child sexual exploitation (CSE) – is part of their service focus.

An associated guide offers practical advice on how organisations can adopt and implement the template.

To access both the guide and the template, go to:


Mapping Current Research Into Child Sexual Abuse

Polly Pascoe and Diana Parkinson, Centre of Expertise on Child Sexual Abuse, 2020

In early 2018, the CSA Centre conducted a survey with the aim of building an understanding of the current research landscape related to CSA, including child sexual exploitation (CSE). This exercise also enables the Centre to highlight gaps, such as a lack of focus on lesser-heard voices, and better prioritise future research activity.

The survey was repeated in mid-2019, and the findings from both surveys are presented in this report. The surveys were intended to provide an insight into the types and forms of research currently being undertaken within the field of CSA.

The report can be accessed at:


Parents’ Experiences of the Children’s Social Care System When a Child is Sexually Exploited

Nancy Pike and Maria Langham with Sarah Lloyd

Parents Against Child Exploitation (Pace), 2019

Over the years many parents and carers have contacted Parents Against Child Exploitation (Pace) because they have not been able to find the help they needed from other sources and Pace has heard numerous accounts of how they have felt failed by Children’s Social Care.

They aimed to find out whether these experiences were still commonly happening, and if so, what effect was it having on families where a child is sexually exploited. This research to address the following questions:

  • What response do parents receive from Children’s Social Care when their child is sexually exploited? and
  • What is the impact of that response on the safeguarding of their children?

The report can be accessed at:


Positions of Trust: It’s Time to Change the Law

APPG on Safeguarding in Faith Settings, 2020

This inquiry explores the extent to which the current provisions within the Sexual Offences Act (SOA) 2003 for ‘positions of trust’ and the offence of ‘abuse of a position of trust’ adequately enable the safeguarding of young people receiving services and support in the wide variety of faith settings that exist across the country.

The objective was to discover and document current knowledge relating to law and practice concerning ‘Positions of Trust’ within the SOA 2003, to ensure faith settings are sufficiently within scope to allow young people to be better protected from harm within the variety of such settings.

To access the report, go to:


A Typology of Child Sexual Abuse Offending

Centre of Expertise on Child Sexual Abuse, 2020

Currently, the ways in which ‘types’ or ‘models’ of child sexual abuse (CSA) offending are described are not consistent. They have largely been developed over time by professionals to help them make sense of what they see in the field. Previous scoping studies on perpetration have highlighted the challenges this presents; a lack of shared definitions of the range of CSA stymies understanding, research, prevention and disruption. Research has also highlighted the challenges of developing appropriate and effective responses to child sexual abuse offending. Part of this challenge stems from difficulties encountered in identifying patterns of offending and the contexts in which CSA offending occurs.

The Centre for Expertise on Child Sexual Abuse have developed this new typology of CSA offending focusing on the context of offending and reflecting different patterns of behaviour rather than focusing on the characteristics of either the perpetrator or the victim.

Support for Victims and Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse Fund 2020-22

Home Office, 2020

The Support for Victims and Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse (SVSCSA) fund, offers £2.4 million for non-statutory organisations supporting victims and survivors of child sexual abuse (children and adults) at a national level in England and Wales. The funding covers financial years 2020/21 and 2021/22.

The prospectus covers the:

  • support offer
  • eligibility criteria
  • application process
  • application timetable

The Prospectus can be accessed at:


The Lighthouse Annual Report 2018 – 2019.

Authors: The Lighthouse, London, 2020

Format: Online report
Summary: Reports on the first year of service of The Lighthouse, a multi-agency service for children and young people who have experienced sexual abuse. Findings from 363 referrals of children and young people aged 0-25-years-old living in the North Central London area who accessed the service between October 2018 and September 2019 include: the most common types of abuse that children and young people were referred for were intra familial (40 per cent), peer on peer (21 per cent) and extra familial (17 per cent).

The report can be accessed at: