September 20, 2013 Comments Off on Historic child abuse inquiry opens in Australia
Historic child abuse inquiry opens in Australia
By Amy Coopes
Published September 15, 2013
SYDNEY (AFP) – An Australian inquiry into church and institutional child abuse began public hearings Monday, with warnings that widespread and “shocking” allegations would be heard against places of worship, orphanages, community groups and schools.
Justice Peter McClellan opened the hearings in the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, announced by the government last November, saying that thousands of people had so far come forward.
“It is now well known that the sexual abuse of children has been widespread in the Australian community, however the full range of institutions in which it has occurred is not generally understood,” McClellan said in an address….
The inquiry was established by former prime minister Julia Gillard in response to a series of child sex abuse scandals involving paedophile priests, though she insisted the probe would be much broader than the Catholic Church….
McClellan said a hotline set up for survivors of abuse to contact the commission had so far received 4,301 relevant calls….
the first of five public sessions to be held before the end of the year, will examine the “case study” of convicted paedophile Steven Larkins, who headed an Aboriginal children’s charity and was also a Scout leader.
Larkins pleaded guilty to indecently assaulting two boys — aged 11 and 12 — in separate incidents in 1992 and 1997, and is currently in jail for child pornography offences and forging a declaration of his fitness to work with juveniles.
November 21, 2012 Comments Off on $123M settlement Delaware abuse case, Institutional Abuse North Ireland, Rochdale, Gangs
– $123M settlement approved in Del. child abuse case
– Historic child abuse investigation will now cost £19m, Assembly told
– Rochdale child abuse case: exploited girls faced ‘absolute disrespect’
– 45 children a day at risk from sexual exploitation by gangs, warns inquiry
– Groomed, raped, frightened: the victims of child sexual exploitation
$123M settlement approved in Del. child abuse case
Esteban Parra, The (Wilmington, Del.) News Journal Share
The former pediatrician last year was found guilty of raping or assaulting more than 100 girls he treated. His own videos helped to convict him.
November 20. 2012 –
GEORGETOWN, Del. — A Superior Court judge approved a $123 million class-action settlement related to the child sexual abuse committed by former Lewes, Del., pediatrician Earl Bradley.
Under the Monday settlement’s terms, the money would be put into a pool for victims, similar to the system used for victims in priest sex-abuse cases.
A mediator will evaluate each claim and separate them into different categories based on the severity of abuse. A settlement amount then will be assigned to each category and all approved for that category will be paid.
“The approval of this class-action settlement marks the end of litigation arising from Dr. Bradley’s 15-year reign of terror and abuse in Sussex County,” Superior Court Judge Joseph R. Slights III wrote in his 56-page decision….
Historic child abuse investigation will now cost £19m, Assembly told
By Lesley-Anne McKeown
Wednesday, 21 November 2012
Costs for an inquiry into historical institutional child abuse in Northern Ireland could reach £19m, the Assembly has been told.
Ulster Unionist MLA Mike Nesbitt, who chairs Stormont’s OFMDFM committee, said MLAs had been informed in September that predicted costs had doubled from initial estimates.
The Strangford MLA added: “On the estimated costs of the inquiry the committee sought clarification from the department whether the figures in the financial and explanatory memorandum of between £7.5m and £9m remained accurate.
“Officials advised the committee that the estimated costs had been revised upwards — doubled in fact to £15-19m to take into account the complexities of the inquiry and the associated legal costs.”….
Initially, the inquiry was to look at cases between 1945 and 1995, but MLAs have since agreed to extend it back to 1922.
The probe comes after the Ryan Report uncovered decades of endemic abuse in some religious institutions in the Republic of Ireland.
Rochdale child abuse case: exploited girls faced ‘absolute disrespect’
MPs question why the NHS crisis team that was praised for raising the alarm about sexual abuse in Rochdale has suffered job cuts
Rachel Williams The Guardian, Tuesday 20 November 2012
It was a simple yet powerful piece of evidence. Asked what lay behind the failures in Rochdale over sexual exploitation of teenage girls, Sara Rowbotham, co-ordinator of the local NHS crisis intervention team, paused before answering. “It was about attitudes towards teenagers,” she told the home affairs select committee earlier this month. “It was absolute disrespect that vulnerable young people did not have a voice. They were overlooked. They were discriminated against. They were treated appallingly by protective services.”
Since nine men were jailed in May for “sharing” five girls, plying them with fast food, drink and drugs so they could use them for sex, a picture has emerged of missed opportunities to help young girls being exploited – based on a mistaken belief they were simply “making their own choices”. The NHS team has emerged as one of the few services that got it right. But staff numbers on the team, which offers one-to-one sexual health advice to vulnerable teenagers, have been cut from 10 to seven over the past three years.
A Guardian investigation this year found the crisis intervention team made more than 100 referrals about girls it thought were either being sexually exploited, or at risk of it, to Rochdale borough council social services and Greater Manchester police between 2004 and the end of 2010. A report published in September by the local safeguarding children board (SCB) was damning of the “poor response” of Rochdale’s children’s social care department. It also praised the crisis intervention team’s ability to understand that girls were victims of abuse, rather than consenting young adults. Its work, Rowbotham told the select committee, had helped secure the recent convictions, because the victims’ evidence was corroborated by the service’s case notes….
45 children a day at risk from sexual exploitation by gangs, warns inquiry
Local authorities, police and healthcare professionals ignoring warning signs displayed by those at risk, says interim report
The Guardian, Tuesday 20 November 2012
As many as 45 children a day are at risk of rape, violence and sexual exploitation at the hands of gangs who prey on their vulnerability, according to the biggest study of its kind carried out in England….
The inquiry’s interim report found that 2,409 children had been sexually exploited in a 14-month period form August 2010 to October 2011, but the real figure was likely to be “far greater” because of lack of data and confusion in reporting sexual exploitation. As many as 16,500 children were identified as being at “high risk” of sexual exploitation – displaying three or more warning signs including running away from home, drug or alcohol misuse and criminality.
Groomed, raped, frightened: the victims of child sexual exploitation
Children living in residential care are particularly at risk of sexual exploitation, according to report
Alexandra Topping The Guardian, Tuesday 20 November 2012
Teegan, a white British girl, told report authors she had been sexually exploited from the age of 12. After being groomed she was taken to “parties” across England in nice houses, sometimes mansions, where men could choose which girls they wanted to have sex with from a book with photographs and ages of all of the girls available. Teegan thought she cost around £500 a hour, and said in some cases one girl could be hired for a group of men over an evening. If Teegan refused, she would be beaten and her family threatened. After the abuse, she took several overdoses, was placed in secure accommodation, and self-harmed – sometimes on a daily basis. She said she was too scared to make a formal complaint.
Marina, 16, and her 14-year-old sister were sexually exploited after being groomed by white British shop owners in return for alcohol and cigarettes. Marina also had a “boyfriend” in his late 30s, of North African origin, who would pass her around his friends for sex. She told the report that she was driven to “parties” where she would be raped by multiple men before being dropped off at home.
In another case, when Sahida, a 17-year-old British Pakistani girl, said a family member had sexually abused her she was threatened with a forced marriage. After the threats she began spending time with older Asian males, and was moved to multiple locations by them. She is now pregnant and has been physically assaulted by her family as a punishment.
Children living in residential care are particularly at risk of sexual exploitation, according to the report. A specialist sexual exploitation service told the report that a particular home was repeatedly targeted by groomers, and that new girls coming into the home were likely to be sexually exploited….