Horrifying regime of violence and sexual abuse, Congress moves to confront military child abuse with Talia’s Law
February 10, 2016 Comments Off on Horrifying regime of violence and sexual abuse, Congress moves to confront military child abuse with Talia’s Law
REVEALED: A horrifying regime of violence and sexual abuse: This chilling Mail dossier exposes the vital evidence the Deepcut coroner refuses to hear
By RICHARD PENDLEBURY FOR THE DAILY MAIL 9 February 2016
Private Kate Wilson claims she was assaulted and sexually harassed
Said she witnessed horrific abuse after joining Army as a teenage recruit
She spoke out as second inquest into death of Private Cheryl James began
Mail investigation has revealed that a ‘wider culture of sexual abuse’ within the Army may be what the Deepcut coroner should now be considering
By Richard Pendlebury for the Daily Mail
For Private Kate Wilson, the final insult came when an administrative major at Deepcut Barracks — a man — told her: ‘What you don’t seem to realise is that you are just a number to us. We have no further use for you.’
In the 18 months since Private Wilson had joined as a teenage recruit, the British Army had ‘used’ her in a quite horrific fashion.
She had, she says, been viciously assaulted for refusing to sleep with one of her bosses, sexually harassed by other male non-commissioned officers, urinated upon while asleep, and, finally, crippled for life thanks to the carelessness of a misogynistic instructor.
That injury — a broken hip — led to her interview with that callous major, and a medical discharge from the career she had wanted since she was four years old. She still suffers with the injury 20 years later.
Wilson was by no means unique. During her ‘training’, she had witnessed a serious but unpunished sexual assault by an instructor on one of her sleeping female room-mates, and the daily abuse of other vulnerable female recruits — little more than children — by much older NCOs.
‘These were men with no honour and no pride,’ she told me this week. ‘We were kids, and they were monsters; vile and barbaric. A lot of people in the Army who could have helped knew what was happening — and yet they did nothing.’….
Congress moves to confront military child abuse with Talia’s Law
By Drew Gerber, Medill News Service
The House on Tuesday passed a bill that would require anyone employed by the Defense Department to report cases of suspected child abuse on military installations to state child protective service agencies in addition to reporting such suspected crimes up their chain of command.
The legislation was approved by voice vote and sent to the Senate for consideration.
Called Talia’s Law, the bill is named for five-year-old Talia Williams who was tortured and beaten to death by her father — an active-duty Army specialist at the time — and step-mother in 2005 at Wheeler Army Airfield in Hawaii.
Talia’s mother, Tarshia Williams, sued the U.S. government in 2008 for what she argued were failures by military officials to report suspicions that her daughter was being abused. Williams was awarded $2 million in a settlement last May…..
Citing the 29,000 cases of child abuse and neglect in the military in the past decade, Gabbard said on the House floor Tuesday that her bill creates the same protections for military children that exist for any other child.
Rates of child abuse and neglect in the military, though half the rate typically seen in the civilian population, have been on the rise since 2010, according to a 2014 memorandum from Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Rosemary Williams….
Sexual abuse allegations shut down football season at New Jersey school, Hidden Marks: A study of women students’ experiences of harassment, stalking, violence and sexual assault
October 13, 2014 Comments Off on Sexual abuse allegations shut down football season at New Jersey school, Hidden Marks: A study of women students’ experiences of harassment, stalking, violence and sexual assault
– Sexual abuse allegations shut down football season at New Jersey school
– Seven Sayreville football players suspended amid abuse scandal at New Jersey school
– Campus nightmare: female students on the rise of sexual harassment
– Hidden Marks
A study of women students’ experiences of harassment, stalking, violence and sexual assault
– NUS research reveals one in four students suffer unwelcome sexual advances
Sexual abuse allegations shut down football season at New Jersey school
October 10, 2014, by CNN Wire
SAYREVILLE, N.J. — The crunching sound of football cleats on hallway floors became the drone of dread for freshman at a New Jersey high school. As they marched into the locker room, an ugly hazing ritual allegedly awaited them.
Upperclassmen howled as they flipped off the lights then sexually abused their younger classmates at Sayreville High School, parents and players say.
Authorities are investigating, and the school’s superintendent has canceled the successful team’s football season.
The coach and officials won’t comment on details of the abuse, but it may have gone on for a year. A Sports Illustrated article indicated that it likely did not involve intercourse.
“There were incidents of harassment, intimidation that took place on a pervasive level, in which the players knew, tolerated and in general accepted,” says Superintendent Richard Labbe….
Seven Sayreville football players suspended amid abuse scandal at New Jersey school
The announcement came an hour before a vigil was to be held in town for the victims of the alleged hazing ritual. BY Bill Price NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Sunday, October 12, 2014
The seven Sayreville football players arrested over the weekend have been suspended from school, Jonathan Busch, the lawyer for the school board said in a statement, according to The Home News Tribune.
“While we are legally restricted from speaking about individual students, it would be fair to say that any student arrested in connection with the matter involving the football program is suspended from Sayreville War Memorial High School, and we are in the process of arranging for an alternative education pending further investigation,” Busch said in the statement.
The announcement came an hour before a vigil was to be held in town for the victims of the alleged hazing ritual….
A joint statement from county prosecutor Andrew C. Carey and Sayreville Police Chief John Zebrowski on Saturday said “seven juveniles have been charged with juvenile delinquency arising from the attacks upon four victims in four separate incidents at Sayreville War Memorial High School.”
The statement said “three of the juveniles were charged with aggravated sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual contact, conspiracy to commit aggravated criminal sexual contact, criminal restraint and hazing for engaging in an act of sexual penetration upon one of the juvenile victims.”….
Campus nightmare: female students on the rise of sexual harassment
Photographed in their beds, shamed on social media – and, for some female students, that’s just the beginning. So what are British universities doing about sexual harassment and assaults?
Sally Williams The Guardian, Friday 10 October 2014
….The extent of sexual assaults on British campuses emerged four years ago when the NUS published Hidden Marks: A Study Of Women Students’ Experiences Of Harassment, Stalking, Violence And Sexual Assault. One in seven respondents had experienced some form of serious physical or sexual assault, the report stated, and more than two-thirds had experienced some kind of verbal or nonverbal harassment in or around university. (The latest NUS survey revealed that 37% of women and 12% of men who responded said they had faced unwelcome sexual advances.) Being groped, having someone put their hand up your skirt at a club and sexual comments were so ubiquitous, the NUS concluded, they were almost a fact of life.
A report last year, by the Ministry of Justice, the Home Office and the Office for National Statistics, stated that female students in full-time education are at higher risk of sexual violence than the general female population. A particularly hazardous time, experts believe, is freshers’ week, when newcomers are invited to a raft of social events. “They are extremely vulnerable,” says Dr Alison Phipps, director of gender studies at Sussex University and coauthor of That’s What She Said, a 2013 report on women students’ experience in higher education. “Some of them are away from home for the first time, are trying to make friends and don’t know the campus, don’t know the city.”….
A study of women students’ experiences of harassment, stalking, violence and sexual assault
Welcome to Hidden Marks, the first ever nationwide report into women students’ experience of harassment, stalking, violence and sexual assault. We decided to undertake this research because women aged 16–24 have a higher risk of experiencing domestic violence, but there appeared to be little awareness of this amongst students. We wanted to find out from women students themselves about their experiences. We wanted to understand what was happening on campus, in halls of residences, and in
students’ unions, and we wanted to hear how women students felt about it.
In this report we provide a snapshot of the harassment and violence that a national sample of women students have faced whilst they have been at their current institution. The picture that we have revealed is disturbing. 14 per cent have experienced serious physical or sexual assault. 68 per cent have been subject to verbal or physical sexual harassment. Nearly one in four has experienced unwanted sexual contact.
NUS research reveals one in four students suffer unwelcome sexual advances
Monday 15 September 2014
NUS President, Toni Pearce today called on UK universities to join NUS in its work on tackling lad culture on UK campuses. The call comes as new research reveals that one in four students (26 per cent) have suffered unwelcome sexual advances, defined as inappropriate touching and groping.
More than a third of women students (37 per cent) said they had faced unwelcome sexual advances.
In the survey of over 2,000 men and women students almost one third of respondents said they endure unwanted sexual comments about their body (12 per cent of men, 37 per cent of women).
Two thirds of respondents said they have seen students put up with unwanted sexual comments, with just under one third bearing witness to verbal harassment based on a student’s gender.
75 per cent of students are aware of online communities such as ‘Unilad’ and ‘Lad Bible’ with almost two thirds of women students (63 per cent) agreeing that these contribute to an unfair representation of women…. http://www.nus.org.uk/en/news/nus-research-reveals-one-in-four-students-suffer-unwelcome-sexual-advances/
Ottawa-Gatineau part of national human trafficking blitz, Ottawa Police takes part in a National Focus on Young Women Coerced Into Sex Trade
January 29, 2014 Comments Off on Ottawa-Gatineau part of national human trafficking blitz, Ottawa Police takes part in a National Focus on Young Women Coerced Into Sex Trade
Ottawa-Gatineau part of national human trafficking blitz
By Derek Spalding, OTTAWA CITIZEN January 28, 2014
OTTAWA — Police from across the country identified girls as young as 15 being forced into prostitution, according to numbers from a national anti-human trafficking blitz conducted last week.
Officers in 26 cities, from Alberta to Newfoundland, were involved in the two-day campaign that yielded interviews with 330 women, eight arrests and 28 individual charges.
Despite appearances, the women do not want to be prostitutes, according to a news release issued by Ottawa police Tuesday
“Investigators found several teenagers and young women were being forced to perform through threats of violence, physical intimidation, drug dependency and other forms of coercion,” the release states. “Part or all of the proceeds from the sexual encounters were kept by their controller or pimp.”
Ottawa Police takes part in a National Focus on Young Women Coerced Into Sex Trade
Tuesday, January 28, 2014
(Ottawa)—Last week, police services from across Canada participated in a two-day blitz focusing on the growing concern that young women are being forced to participate in the sex trade. This project was coordinated by the Durham Regional Police Service.
“Operation Northern Spotlight” involved 26 police services from across Canada and took place on Wednesday January 22 and Thursday January 23, 2014.
Over 330 women, some as young as 15 years of age, were interviewed. Police found some were being forced to perform sexual acts, multiple times a day, for paying male customers.
June 24, 2013 Comments Off on Miami Cold Case Murder Solved With Recovered Memories
Miami Cold Case Murder Solved With Recovered Memories
By Michael E. Miller Thursday, May 9 2013
….Instead, it would be more than a quarter-century before police caught a break. “Back then we were finding so many dope murders,” says retired Miami-Dade homicide detective John Parmenter. “We all thought [the bodies] had something to do with drugs.” He pauses and adds quietly, “How wrong we were.”….
So when Gloria Hampton walked into McCully’s office in the summer of 2010 with a story stranger than fiction, the sergeant was suspicious.
“I just need somebody to listen to me,” Gloria pleaded. The short 29-year-old with wide hips, tan skin, and curly hair had been through years of psychiatric therapy, she said. From the haze of her hurtful childhood, however, she had pulled one particular memory and polished it until clear.
“I saw my father kill my mother when I was 4 years old,” she said. “He put her body into an army-green bag.”
McCully was still skeptical. Cops don’t put much faith in recovered memories, and these were 25 years old. But after Gloria left, he cracked open musty boxes of cold-case files. He flipped through yellowing photographs and police reports for hours before pulling out a thin binder that hadn’t been touched in years. It was the unsolved murder from April 4, 1985. And inside was a photo of a woman’s body in an army-green bag.
DNA analysis quickly confirmed that Gloria’s mother, Nilsa Padilla, was the murder victim known for decades as “Theresa Torso.” Gloria’s father, Jorge Walter Nuñez, instantly became the only suspect. For Miami-Dade police, it was a breakthrough in one of the department’s oldest and most vexing cases. For Gloria, it was salvation.
“They thought I was crazy,” she says of the cops, foster parents, and caseworkers who ridiculed her claims for years. “Now they know I’m not.”….
I didn’t like him at all,” Soto says of Nuñez. “He was always drunk.” He also brought out the worst in Padilla. She drank heavily, slipping into dark moods. One day, Padilla drunkenly hit 4-year-old Bernisa on the head with a brush, causing a gash. Soto told her: “If you ever do that again, I’m calling the cops on you.”
Nuñez and Padilla left town shortly afterward in an old U-Haul truck he’d turned into a makeshift camper by cutting a window in the rear. They drove down the coast to Florida.
When Soto next saw her cousin, it was three years later, in 1984. Padilla was in worse shape than ever. She now had three kids: Bernisa, Gloria, and a baby named Alicia. But the family was on the run from the Florida Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services.
When Soto asked why, Padilla pointed to Gloria’s shoddily bandaged left hand. Nuñez had dropped a heavy piece of metal on the 3-year-old — by accident, he said — mangling her thumb. The two drunks had never taken the toddler to the hospital….
Nuñez, meanwhile, made no effort to hide his hatred. “I’m fed up with her,” he told Soto in Spanish. “One of these days, I’m going to kill her.”….
Instead of comforting her, Padilla drunkenly smacked her daughter. “She hit me so hard my face was bleeding,” Bernisa says. “Maybe she finally realized that she was with the wrong man.”
If so, it was too late. When Nuñez returned around 2 a.m., Padilla was waiting for him. From their bunk bed near the ceiling, the three children saw their father strike her with the butt of a beer bottle. He hit her again and again in the head, the glass breaking within its brown paper bag. She tried to climb out the back door. For a moment, moonlight flooded into the tiny camper.
“Then he shoved her back in with his foot,” Bernisa remembers. “He closed the door, and then he finished her off.”….
“I saw my mom beaten to death,” Bernisa says. “My only protector in the world, and she couldn’t protect herself.” Neither sister remembers Nuñez cutting up the corpse, but Gloria distinctly recalls seeing her father stuff her mother’s body into an army-green bag. “I remember helping him dispose of her,” she says….
The two sisters had already seen their father kill their mother and sister. But those sickening moments were nothing compared to the rape, violence, and neglect that would follow. Without Padilla around, Nuñez would become a monster. And Bernisa and Gloria would be forced to live like animals alongside him to survive….
Nuñez never worked, likely living on Padilla’s welfare checks. Whatever money he did have, he spent on Budweiser or marijuana. The campground was only a few hundred yards from Lower Matecumbe Key’s strip malls, but Bernisa and Gloria lived like wolves. Their hair — Bernisa’s dark, Gloria’s blond — grew long and matted, and they survived on crabs or shrimp they found in shallow pools. “If we didn’t catch anything, we didn’t eat,” Bernisa says.
The sexual abuse that had begun as a secret now spread into a sick obsession. Nuñez would emerge from the U-Haul, growl “Vámanos chicas,” and then molest them. He raped one or both of them nearly every day for years. Sometimes Nuñez would let other men take the girls into the dirty U-Haul at the edge of the world.
“Some of it is blacked out, thank God,” Bernisa says of the abuse. “If we remembered the whole thing, we probably would have gone crazy.”….
The girls’ nightmare lasted four years. Even when the police took Nuñez away, the two girls did not say what he had done to them. It would take another child to scream out….
At the police station, officers tried to get Bernisa to talk. But the 11-year-old said Nuñez never abused them. Then the cops tried Gloria. At first she also denied it all. But then the talkative 8-year-old began to tell the horrible truth. “She would have to keep the bedroom door locked at night to keep Daddy from coming in and touching them,” reads a Monroe County Sheriff’s report from March 1989. They’d kept quiet out of terror, police realized. “If I tell you, will you let my daddy go?” Gloria fearfully asked an officer.
Police didn’t let Nuñez go, at least not for four years. He was convicted of two counts of lewd and lascivious acts on children. By the time he was released in 1993, his daughters had changed their names and disappeared. But they could not change the past. And as they became teenagers, Gloria and Bernisa would relive the horrors of their childhood in their own ways….
Jimmy Savile assaulted children as young as 10, report reveals, German Bishops Cancel Study Into Sexual Abuse by Priests, Rape Has a Purpose – Oppression
January 11, 2013 Comments Off on Jimmy Savile assaulted children as young as 10, report reveals, German Bishops Cancel Study Into Sexual Abuse by Priests, Rape Has a Purpose – Oppression
Jimmy Savile assaulted children as young as 10, report reveals
Police gather evidence of over 200 crimes in institutions visited by DJ, including children’s hospice
Sandra Laville and Josh Halliday The Guardian, Thursday 10 January 2013
Jimmy Savile sexually assaulted children as young as 10 during nearly four decades of activity as a paedophile that took place in a string of institutions, including numerous hospitals, prisons and the BBC, the official inquiry by the Metropolitan police and the NSPCC will say on Friday.
The 30-page report, Giving Victims a Voice, will describe how the celebrity abused up to 500 children and young people, and may have raped more than 30.
Of the allegations made so far, police have gathered sufficient evidence to record 200 sexually related crimes by Savile across the country, committed using the power of his personality and fame to dupe a huge number of institutions – including, it is understood, at least one hospice – into giving him access to vulnerable people.
The number of institutions identified in the inquiry raises the spectre of a systemic failure that spread into every corner of British society.
Detectives and child protection experts working on the inquiry into Savile hope the report will mark a line in the sand – a cultural shift in attitudes between today and 30 years ago, when a blind eye was turned to such activity with children and young people and victims were not listened to.
German Bishops Cancel Study Into Sexual Abuse by Priests
By REUTERS January 9, 2013
PARIS (Reuters) — Germany’s Roman Catholic bishops on Wednesday canceled a study into the sexual abuse of minors by priests, prompting the investigator to accuse them of trying to censor what was to be a major report on the scandals.
The independent study, examining church files that sometimes date to 1945, was meant to shed light on undiscovered cases after about 600 people filed claims against priests in 2010 following a wave of revelations of sexual abuse. The German scandals were part of a series of abuse scandals that also shook the Catholic Church in Ireland, Belgium, the Netherlands and the United States, forcing Pope Benedict XVI to issue a public apology.
Bishop Stephan Ackermann, a spokesman on abuse issues for the German Bishops’ Conference, said that the hierarchy had lost confidence in the researcher, Christian Pfeiffer, a criminologist, and that it would look for another specialist for the study.
“We will have to find a new partner,” Bishop Ackermann said in a statement that blamed Mr. Pfeiffer’s “communications behavior with church officials” for the breakdown.
Mr. Pfeiffer told German Radio that the bishops wanted to change previously agreed-upon guidelines for the project to include a final veto over publishing its results, which he could not accept.
Officials made “an attempt to turn the whole contract towards censorship and stronger control by the church,” said Mr. Pfeiffer, head of the Criminological Research Institute of Lower Saxony.
Rape Has a Purpose 1/05/2013 Soraya Chemaly
….No matter where you are in the world, the result of rape — “date rape,” “gang-rape,” “easy rape,” “emergency rape,” “war rape” — is the same: oppression. Women are not free to live without the constant threat of assault and violence or without being treated like objects and property. When I last checked there were at least four “rape capitals” of the world. You know what that makes the rest of us? “Rape Suburbs.” Girls and women aren’t idiots. On the contrary, we understand perfectly: we’re supposed to “be careful.” Don’t do something we might “regret.” “Stay home.” “So what if it happens, anyway?” We can’t feel any security that our bodily integrity will be respected. Or that our consent matters. We cannot enjoy the confident access and ownership of public space that men do. Our attempts to pursue equality and opportunity are inhibited, not only by actual rape, but by people’s malevolent tolerance for it. Rape is useful, even the rape of boys and men: it sustains a system that rewards physical dominance and sustains male hegemony.
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….
January 24, 2012 Comments Off on Child Abuse Linked to Accusations of ‘Possession’ and ‘Witchcraft,’ Ritual abuse and race
Ritual abuse and race
guardian.co.uk, Monday 23 January 2012
We were pleased to see your report (An abuse of faith, Social care, 18 January) outlining the evidence of the numbers of black children subjected to violence linked to witchcraft. This is extremely concerning and many of us have worked with such children and adults from the black communities who have experienced abusive aspects of juju, Santeria, witchcraft and possession in the UK. While our major religious institutions are now putting safeguarding procedures into place, children (and adults) from smaller religious groups do not have that safety. We are also concerned as individuals and as a committee that the ritual abuse of white children (and adults) is less easily acknowledged (the Kidwelly case in 2011).
It can be far easier, sometimes for racist reasons, to accept the ritual abuse of black children (witness the Adam Case known as “Torso in The Thames” in 2001), and especially from working-class backgrounds. The white middle-class children (and adults) and those who work with them and support them are subject to implications that such experiences, if the victim is not black, must be bizarre delusions. This makes it harder for disclosures to be made and for the police to help, and delays the understanding of the impact of ritual on all children and adults when used abusively.
Dr V Sinason, Rachel Wingfield, Prof Joseph Schwartz, Dr Sandra Buck, Dr Joan Coleman, Carole Mallard, Wilfred Wong, Deborah Briggs, Dr Pat Frankish, David Leevers, Orit Badouk-Epstein, Lynn Greenwood
Committee on Ritual Abuse, London
Why is child abuse tied to witchcraft on the rise?
Evidence is emerging that a growing number of children are being subjected to exorcism rituals. Louise Hunt finds out why
Louise Hunt The Guardian, Tuesday 17 January 2012
Social workers are used to coping with the unexpected – it comes with the territory. But child-protection specialists are increasingly coming across a kind of case that few textbooks have prepared them for: abuse of children related to belief in witchcraft.
Child abuse linked to ideas of spirit possession and witchcraft branding is a growing phenomenon, according to evidence given to the Commons education select committee’s current inquiry into child protection. It is predominantly an issue in African communities, often fuelled by extreme religious conviction, and experts believe that its growth is a reaction to personal or family misfortune brought about by the economic downturn.
Child Abuse Linked to Accusations of ‘Possession’ and ‘Witchcraft’
The belief in “possession” and “witchcraft” is widespread. The UK is not alone in seeing cases of this nature; cases have been reported worldwide. The children discussed in this report came from a variety of backgrounds including African, South Asian and European.
This report is based on desk research and discussions with social workers, school teachers, police officers, voluntary workers and others who had knowledge of aspects of the subject. An important feature has been collecting and examining reports of cases that occurred since January 2000, analysing the often limited information recorded and drawing conclusions from this material.
Relationship of Childhood Abuse and Household Dysfunction to Many of the Leading Causes of Death in Adults
October 12, 2011 Comments Off on Relationship of Childhood Abuse and Household Dysfunction to Many of the Leading Causes of Death in Adults
Relationship of Childhood Abuse and Household Dysfunction to Many of the Leading Causes of Death in Adults: The Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study –
American Journal of Preventive Medicine
Volume 14, Issue 4 , Pages 245-258, May 1998
Vincent J Felitti MD, FACP, Robert F Anda MD, MS, Dale Nordenberg MD, David F Williamson MS, PhD, Alison M Spitz MS, MPH, Valerie Edwards BA, Mary P Koss PhD, James S Marks MD, MPH
Background: The relationship of health risk behavior and disease in adulthood to the breadth of exposure to childhood emotional, physical, or sexual abuse, and household dysfunction during childhood has not previously been described.
Methods: A questionnaire about adverse childhood experiences was mailed to 13,494 adults who had completed a standardized medical evaluation at a large HMO; 9,508 (70.5%) responded. Seven categories of adverse childhood experiences were studied: psychological, physical, or sexual abuse; violence against mother; or living with household members who were substance abusers, mentally ill or suicidal, or ever imprisoned. The number of categories of these adverse childhood experiences was then compared to measures of adult risk behavior, health status, and disease. Logistic regression was used to adjust for effects of demographic factors on the association between the cumulative number of categories of childhood exposures (range: 0–7) and risk factors for the leading causes of death in adult life.
Results: More than half of respondents reported at least one, and one-fourth reported =2 categories of childhood exposures. We found a graded relationship between the number of categories of childhood exposure and each of the adult health risk behaviors and diseases that were studied (P < .001). Persons who had experienced four or more categories of childhood exposure, compared to those who had experienced none, had 4- to 12-fold increased health risks for alcoholism, drug abuse, depression, and suicide attempt; a 2- to 4-fold increase in smoking, poor self-rated health, =50 sexual intercourse partners, and sexually transmitted disease; and a 1.4- to 1.6-fold increase in physical inactivity and severe obesity. The number of categories of adverse childhood exposures showed a graded relationship to the presence of adult diseases including ischemic heart disease, cancer, chronic lung disease, skeletal fractures, and liver disease. The seven categories of adverse childhood experiences were strongly interrelated and persons with multiple categories of childhood exposure were likely to have multiple health risk factors later in life.
Conclusions: We found a strong graded relationship between the breadth of exposure to abuse or household dysfunction during childhood and multiple risk factors for several of the leading causes of death in adults.
….However, our estimates of the prevalence of childhood exposures are similar to estimates from nationally representative surveys, indicating that the experiences of our study participants are comparable to the larger population of U.S. adults. In our study, 23.5% of participants reported having grown up with an alcohol abuser; the 1988 National Health Interview Survey estimated that 18.1% of adults had lived with an alcohol abuser during childhood. Contact sexual abuse was reported by 22% of respondents (28% of women and 16% of men) in our study. A national telephone survey of adults in 1990 using similar criteria for sexual abuse estimated that 27% of women and 16% of men had been sexually abused.
August 4, 2011 Comments Off on 72 charged in online child pornography ring, Violence Against Women and effects
“the bulletin board distributed the equivalent of 16,000 DVDs of child pornography, adding that the department had recovered more than 1 million images in the U.S. alone.”
“In the United States, more than 20 percent of women have experienced intimate-partner violence, stalking or both. A full 17 percent have reported rape or attempted rape, according to background information in the study.”
72 charged in online child pornography ring
Fifty-two have been arrested in the U.S. and abroad and 13 have pleaded guilty in the case, the result of a crackdown by the Justice and Homeland Security departments. Twenty remain at large.
By Andrew Seidman, Washington Bureau
August 3, 2011
Reporting from Washington—
The Justice Department has charged 72 suspected members of an online child pornography ring that encouraged its members to engage in sexual acts with children 12 and under and submit gruesome, violent material to build a massive private database of images and videos on the Internet.
The crackdown is the result of a joint effort by the departments of Justice and Homeland Security launched in December 2009 to target about 500 people in 13 countries on five continents for their suspected participation in “Dreamboard,” a members-only online bulletin board that was created to encourage the sharing of graphic images and videos.
“The members of this criminal network shared a demented dream to create the preeminent online community for the promotion of child sexual exploitation,” Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. said in a statement, “but for the children they victimized, this was nothing short of a nightmare.”
According to court documents filed in Louisiana, where the ring originated, administrators for Dreamboard set up strict barriers to entry and created a sophisticated membership system that offered incentives for further contributions to the website. Individuals had to post child pornography in order to join the site. To maintain membership, individuals were required to continue to upload images of sexual abuse….
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said that the bulletin board distributed the equivalent of 16,000 DVDs of child pornography, adding that the department had recovered more than 1 million images in the U.S. alone.
Violence Against Women Can Take Lifelong Toll: Study
Research shows how rates of mental and physical illness rise, quality of life falls
By Serena Gordon HealthDay Reporter
TUESDAY, Aug. 2 (HealthDay News)
Women who’ve suffered from gender-based violence are more likely to develop anxiety disorders or other mental woes, experience physical and mental disabilities, and have worse quality of life than other women, new research shows.
Gender-based violence includes rape and other forms of sexual assault, intimate-partner violence (such as spouse abuse) and stalking.
Risks for these long-term problems rose with the intensity of abuse. For example, women who’d experienced three or four types of gender-based violence had 10 times the odds of developing an anxiety disorder than women who haven’t experienced such violence, the study found. The odds of a woman who’d been subjected to such violence developing a substance abuse problem were almost six times higher than for a woman who hasn’t experienced gender-based violence….
Results of the study are published in the Aug. 3 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association….
In the United States, more than 20 percent of women have experienced intimate-partner violence, stalking or both. A full 17 percent have reported rape or attempted rape, according to background information in the study.
The data for Rees’ study came from a national survey done in Australia on mental health and well-being. The survey included over 4,400 women between the ages of 16 and 85 years old.
In that group, 1,218 women (27 percent) reported experiencing at least one form of gender-based violence, while 139 had been exposed to three or more forms of gender-based violence.
The average age that women were first raped was 13 years old and 12 years old for sexual assault. The average age that women were beaten by a partner or stalked was 22 years old.
The more violence a woman was exposed to, the greater her risk of developing mental illnesses, according to the study.