Cases & statistics relating to Children

Statistics about child abuse

According to NSPCC research, a significant minority of children suffer serious abuse or neglect:

  • In 2009/10, nearly 12,000 allegations of children suffering abuse were passed from the NSPCC Helpline to police or social services.
  • Three-quarters (72%) of sexually abused children did not tell anyone about the abuse at the time. 27% told someone later. Around a third (31%) still had not told anyone about their experience(s) by early adulthood.
  • Children under one are the age group most at-risk of being killed at the hands of another person.
  • In 2008/09, police in England and Wales recorded more than 21,000 sex offences against children.
  • In 2009/10, ChildLine counsellors dealt with over 500,000 contacts from children calling about various problems including, bullying, sex abuse, violence and mental health issues.
  • On average, every week in England and Wales at least one child is killed at the hands of another person.

Recent Cases

7/2/11 Caution for leaving son to mind brother leads to automatic bar. A mother who left her son of 14 to mind his three-year-old brother while she went to the shops was given a police caution for “cruelty” and was suspended from work. Police found that the mother – who worked as a healthcare assistant – left the brothers alone together for just 30 minutes. Although there was no “incident” and they were not believed to be in danger, the mother was cautioned by officers for “committing an act of cruelty on a child or young person.” She is now fighting for a law change and reinstatement, claiming that the system makes her “unemployable” and she has been suspended from her job since September 2009 As well as being unable to pass a CRB check, the caution automatically bars her from working with children for 10 years. This case highlights the issues of when it is acceptable for parents to briefly leave older siblings home alone as carers – and whether police cautions are an appropriate response. BBC comments

24/1/11 Ex-policeman jailed for string of child sex offences. An ex-police officer, Daniel Lishman, who committed a string of sex offences against children has been jailed for life and told he will serve at least 11 years. The 37-year-old used jobs as a mobile dog-groomer and TV licensing officer to carry out at least eight offences and was arrested after attacking a 12-year-old girl. The charges, including one of rape and 12 of sexual assault, related to a total of 13 victims, including three with disabilities or learning difficulties, as well as hundreds of indecent images of children. The offences took place between early 2001 and February 2010 and all but one was committed in Northamptonshire.

17/1/11 Children as young as 10 ‘groomed for sex by gangs’ Barnardo’s says it is working with more than 1,000 children who have been sexually exploited by organised gangs of men in cities across the UK. It says a specific minister must be given formal responsibility for tackling the issue. Earlier this month, two married British men of Pakistani origin were jailed in Derby for grooming and abusing several teenage girls. The former home secretary Jack Straw later claimed some Pakistani men believed white girls were “easy meat”, but he was immediately criticised for his remarks. Following the case, the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (Ceop) announced that it had begun a study “to identify any patterns of offending, victimisation or vulnerability”.Continue reading the main story