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venerdì 24 marzo 2017
Child sexual abuse doubles in West Midlands
The number of child sex offences recorded by police in the West Midlands has more than doubled – leaving young people ashamed, depressed and even suicidal.
New data from the NSPCC reveals there were 2,598 offences recorded in the West Midlands last year, which is more than double the previous year’s total of 1,265.
The reports, which average seven per day include crimes against children rape, sexual assault, and sexual exploitation.
Across the UK, the total rose to a record 55,507 in 2015/16, which was an average of 152 a day.
Latest statistics gained through NSPCC requests to police found officers across the UK recorded, on average,one child sex offence every ten minutes.
A total of 746 crimes in the West Midlands were recorded against children aged 10 and under, while 194 of these crimes were perpetrated against victims aged four and under.
The NSPCC the dramatic increase can be explained by improvements in police recording, growing confidence from victims to report abuse and the growth of online grooming.
The NSPCC’s “Speak Out. Stay Safe” programme visits primary schools across the UK to help children learn the signs of abuse and what to do if they have been the victim of such abuse. In 2015/16, more than 8,000 pupils at schools across Birmingham took part in a “Speak Out. Stay Safe” assembly or workshop.
NSPCC chief executive Peter Wanless said: “This steep rise lays bare just how extensive this appalling crime against children has become, claiming multiple victims every hour, some of whom are yet to say their first word.
“Sexual abuse can shatter a child’s life and leave them feeling ashamed, depressed, or even suicidal. Now, more than ever, victims need help as soon as possible to help them recover from their ordeals and go on to lead full and happy lives.
“Government must commit funds to early intervention that better help these children who through no fault of their own are enduring so much pain.”
* Children can contact Childline 24 hours a day, 365 days a year on 0800 1111 or by visiting www.childline.org.uk
You can also speak to police on 101, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.