A recent Freedom of Information request to the 43 police forces of England and Wales by the NSPCC has revealed the true extent of sexual abuse being perpetrated against children. Last year there were more than 400 offences reported each week; equating to nearly 60 children a day and accounting for over a third of all sex crimes.

These shocking statistics include offences such as rape, incest and abuse of children through prostitution and pornography. The same information has also revealed that only 1 in 10 abusers are ultimately convicted for their actions. The staggering reality is that last year a child was sexually abused every 20 minutes

Of the sixty children are abused everyday in England and Wales, over 20% of the 23,097 victims last year were of primary school age and 1,500 were aged 5 or under. The figures show that girls are 6 times more likely to be abused than boys and the majority of the victims were aged 11-17. Many of these children are helpless; too young to understand what is happening to them and often unable to ask for help.

The NSPCC is calling for serious reforms to combat this problem. A major governmental effort is needed in terms of providing therapeutic services for victims and treatment programmes for offenders. There also needs to be a strong focus on prevention; keep-safe work is needed from within schools; from parents and also the public at large in order to reduce the extent of sexual abuse crime as revealed by these statistics. The NSPCC is currently pioneering a series of new programmes to work with school children; each with a different approach depending on the age of the children involved.

The young victims of abuse need to be given the support and services to enable them to rebuild and get on with their lives. Here at Farleys we are experts in obtaining compensation for victims of sexual abuse. If you have been affected by any of the above issues, please do not hesitate to contact one of our specialist solicitors who will be able to advise you if you can make a claim.