IICSA report following investigation into the internet

In March 2020, IICSA published their investigation report into the internet. The report followed IICSA’s investigation into the growing problem of online-facilitated child sexual abuse.

During public hearings in 2018 and 2019, the Inquiry heard distressing accounts from those directly affected by child sexual abuse facilitated online and the devastating and long term impact that this abuse has had on them. The Inquiry heard no evidence to suggest that the number of offenders who use the internet to facilitate abuse of children is falling. UK law enforcement record almost 10 grooming offences per day and arrest between 400 and 450 people per month for offences of online-facilitated child sexual abuse and exploitation.

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IICSA: A summary

At last month’s three day public hearing, the inquiry heard from various parties, such as insurers, local authorities, and solicitors that represent victims and survivors, as well as those that represent insurers and other organisations.

The key topics for discussion centered around limitation and redress, and how this impacted all relevant stakeholders in claims for child sexual abuse.

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This week at IICSA

A three day public hearing is due to take place at IICSA this week, starting 26 November, in connection with the second phase of the Accountability and Reparations investigation.

IICSA will hear evidence from a range of practitioners, including insurers who handle civil claims received from victims and survivors, solicitors acting for victims and survivors, solicitors who represent organisations facing accusations, as well as other interested parties.

The hearing will look at whether the law of limitation in civil cases should be reformed, and whether a redress scheme should be implemented. At present, the law on limitation sets out that claims must be brought within a set window, save if the defendant chooses not to raise this as a defence, or the court is satisfied that the strict test for setting aside limitation (s33 Limitation Act 1980) is met.

In due course, the inquiry will consider whether the mechanisms currently in place adequately support victims and survivors.

These hearings follow on from the preliminary hearing which took place last month, the transcript for which can be found here.

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Proposed extension and general update on Lambeth Redress Scheme

An updated report on the Lambeth Redress Scheme (LRS) was presented by Lambeth Council at a Cabinet Meeting on the 16 of September.

The report provides an update on the working of the (LRS) up to the end of June, 2019 which is half way through the period of time that the LRS was to be open to receive applications the Scheme was originally due to close on the 1 January, 2020.

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IICSA poll finds that more than three quarters of child abuse survivors feel stereotyped

A poll of 116 survivors from IICSA’s Victims and Survivors Forum found that 69% of people did not speak about the abuse due to fears of being stereotyped and 81% said they have felt stereotyped since disclosing the abuse.

Many survivors talked about how they felt “put in a box” after disclosing their abuse, describing how they had been labelled as emotionally unstable, damaged or weak.  They explained the detrimental impact this had had on their professional and personal lives.

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IICSA publishes report on child sexual abuse in custodial institutions

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) published its report into sexual abuse of children in custodial institutions on the 28 February 2019.

The report follows on from a hearing on 9 – 20 July 2018 and can be found here.

It examines evidence of “appalling abuse and institutional failures to protect children in the youth secure estate in England and Wales”.  The investigation looked at Youth Offenders Institutions (YOI), Secure Training Centres (STC) and Secure Children’s Homes (SCH).

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Australian Redress Scheme about to get underway – 1st July, 2018

On the 10th May, 2018 the National Redress Scheme (the Scheme) legislation was introduced to the Parliament for Australia. This legislation replaces the Commonwealth legislation previously introduced and this allow for States and territories that join the Scheme to participate under law. Continue reading