Child Abuse

Why Australia should not have a public register of child sex offenders

To many, “sex offender” conjures a specific image: stranger abduction, child victim, sexual assault, murder. Danielle Harris Brisbane Times Such horrible things do happen but’s it extraordinarily rare. It’s so horrible that it makes the news. And it happens so rarely that it makes the news every time it happens, and when it happens it shakes us to our core. As a child, I was keenly aware of the fates of Sian Kingi and then of Ebony Simpson, and of ... Read More »

NSW institutions can now be sued for abuse

The NSW government has eliminated a legal defence used by churches to avoid being sued by victims of child sex abuse. SBS AAP Victims of child sex abuse in NSW can now sue the church after the state government removed a legal roadblock used by institutions to avoid compensating survivors. From January 1 churches will no longer be able to use the “Ellis defence” as a way of avoiding paying compensation. In 2007 former altar boy John Ellis lost a ... Read More »

Pope demotes two cardinals over sexual abuse scandals

Two cardinals facing allegations linked to sexual abuse have been removed from Pope Francis’s inner circle, the Vatican said. BBC Australia’s George Pell and Chile’s Francisco Javier Errazuriz will no longer sit on the Council of Cardinals, set up by the pope as an international advice body. The pair were absent from the last meeting of the group in September. A spokesperson said the Pope wrote to them both in October to thank them. Cardinal Pell, who remains the Vatican ... Read More »

South Sudan region ‘sees huge increase in rape’, says charity

Dozens of women and girls have been subjected to rape and other violence over the past 10 days in a northern region of South Sudan, Doctors Without Borders has said. BBC A midwife at the charity said 125 women came to its clinic in Bentiu, more than in the whole of the previous 10 months. They included girls under 10, women over 65 and pregnant women, she added. The country has been ravaged by civil war for most of its ... Read More »

Former archbishop Philip Wilson’s lawyers say forcing a child into a sex act wasn’t indecent assault in the 1970s

Lawyers appealing former archbishop of Adelaide Philip Wilson’s conviction for covering up child abuse have argued that convincing a child to perform a sex act did not constitute indecent assault in the 1970s. Ben Millington ABC Wilson was convicted in May of concealing the indecent assault of a boy by paedophile priest Jim Fletcher in the Hunter region of NSW. The court found that in 1976 the victim confided in Wilson that he had been sexually abused, yet Wilson failed ... Read More »

Dr Azeem Ibrahim: Where the far-right goes wrong about Pakistani paedophile gangs

Ethnicity does not seem to play a significant role in rates of child sex abuse despite recent high-profile cases involving men of Pakistani origins; instead, what is unusual about their behaviour is the… Dr Azeem Ibrahim The Scotsman Shocking grooming scandals involving Pakistani men have created another tense moment in the history of race relations in the UK, And there really is a deep problem here – it is not just about the… Soon after the news of that case, ... Read More »

Home Secretary accused of ‘sowing division’ after tweeting about ‘Asian paedophiles’

‘In a nod to the far right, he has increased the risk of racist abuse and violence for Asian people’ Saman Javed Independent Sajid Javid is facing backlash from MPs and race equality advocates after tweeting about “sick Asian paedophiles”. The home secretary’s tweet came after a gang of 20 men were found guilty of the rape and sexual abuse of girls aged as young as 11 in Huddersfield. The full tweet reads… The tweet, which targets Asians, was condemned by Labour MP David Lammy who ... Read More »

Turkey’s Future is at Stake: Forgotten Children of Turkey

Nowadays, protecting and even improving the rights of the children are among the key requirements of being a democratic country. Deniz Zengin PoliTurco It is an incontestable right for the children, who are a part of the social life, to take part as individuals in the community. The convention on the rights of the children, which contains the most extensive regulation about legitimatizing and protecting the rights of the children in international law, is based on the fact that the ... Read More »

Yazidi Survivor Nadia Murad, Subject Of ‘On Her Shoulders’ Documentary, Awarded Nobel Peace Prize

Today it was announced that the Nobel Peace Prize for 2018 has been awarded to two individuals for their respective efforts “to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict.” WYSK They include Dr. Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad, a Yazidi survivor and activist, whose powerful story is the subject of Alexandria Bombach’s award-winning 2018 documentary ‘On Her Shoulders’ (view… In announcing the equal share winners of this year’s Nobel Peace Prize, the Nobel Committee wrote ... Read More »

Australian Catholic Church rejects calls for priests to report child abuse confessions

Australia’s Catholic Church has rejected calls for priests to be compelled to report child abuse revealed in confessionals. By Euan McKirdy and Ben Westcott, CNN The Church said Friday it would accept “98%” of recommendations made by a high-level government inquiry into child sexual abuse, which uncovered shocking accounts of widespread abuse inside… But church leaders said that they would maintain the sanctity of confession, arguing to remove it would infringe on religious liberties. “The only recommendation we can’t accept ... Read More »

Why it’s so hard to hold priests accountable for sex abuse

A grand jury report recently found shocking levels of child sex abuse in the Catholic Church. It uncovered, in six dioceses, the sexual abuse of over 1,000 children and named 301 perpetrator priests. Carolyn M. Warner The Conversation It also found that religious officials had turned a blind eye to the abuse. In response, Pope Francis, head of the Roman Catholic Church, wrote a letter addressed to “the People of God,” saying, “With shame and repentance, we acknowledge as an ... Read More »

Pope Francis in Ireland draws 600,000 people amid protests

Although his visit will draw vast crowds, Ireland is no longer the Catholic stronghold it once was. His visit will be marked by abuse protests that would have been unthinkable at Pope John Paul II’s visit. Ralf Sotscheck DW Pope Francis is coming to Ireland for the World Meeting of Families, and the Emerald Isle has come down with Pope fever. A large part of central Dublin has been cordoned off, and 600,000 people are expected at the papal Mass ... Read More »

You don’t have to look far to find human trafficking victims

Many people think that human trafficking means kidnapping and moving victims across state or national borders. Laurie Charles The Conversation After working with human trafficking victims as a forensic nurse and now while teaching at Texas A&M University’s College of Nursing, I know that this often is not the case. I have found that many perpetrators find, entice and sell their victims right in their own backyards. Victims are often hidden in plain sight, leading everyone from police to health ... Read More »

Vatican expresses ‘shame and sorrow’ over abuse of 1,000 children by more than 300 priests in Pennsylvania

The Vatican has expressed ‘shame and sorrow’ after a report detailed decades of abuse in the Catholic Church Chris Riotta Independent The Vatican has expressed “shame and sorrow” in its first response to a groundbreaking US Grand Jury report detailing decades of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church. The report accuses over 300 “predator” priests throughout Pennsylvania of abusing nearly 1,000 children — and the Church of conducting a systematic cover-up. However, the actual number of total abuses in those dioceses since 1947 ... Read More »

Report: Church leaders pressured victims, cops over abuse

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — A grand jury investigating clergy sex abuse in six Pennsylvania Roman Catholic dioceses found that church leaders were more interested in preventing scandal than… Mark Scolforo RNS The grand jury’s full, nearly 900-page, report is expected to be released in the next two weeks. But a court filing made public Friday, resolving one of many legal disputes over the report, included excerpts from the… According to the document, the grand jury concluded that victims were “brushed ... Read More »

Norway’s hidden scandal

The UN rates Norway, the first country to appoint a Children’s Ombudsman, as one of the best countries for a child to grow up in. And yet, according to many Norwegian experts, its child protection system is “dysfunctional” – too many children, they say, are taken into care without good reason. Tim Whewell BBC The conviction of a top child protection psychiatrist for downloading child abuse images is now raising further serious questions. It was a winter’s day, some years ... Read More »