“There is great opportunity for our partners, for example, in health and education, and our communities – parents, carers, neighbours, friends – to be the eyes and ears, and spot the signs before the damage is done and a child is abused.”
Children may be speaking out but are they listened to?
As the Children Industry is so lucrative then the fundamental business plan is that exploiting children for profit is good for business. A Relate’s counsellors says: “Parental conflict has the most damaging effect on children and we see this played out in the counselling room every day.” Business must be good then.
It would take far longer than we have today to catalogue all the clerical abuse of which we are aware, that is available to all from public sources.
Evidence is emerging, particularly in the UK, of a further kind of abuse: celebrities and politicians in the past using their power in order to secure access to children to abuse them and to escape justice. Sometimes that kind of abuse occurs within institutions, such as the BBC or in hospitals or schools. This reminds us of another aspect of abuse: the misuse of power. And going back a few decades, no one was more powerful in the parish context than the local priest, or in a school in particular, the teachers. This power enabled them to do whatever they wanted, unquestioned, confident that any accusations made against them would always be dismissed.
But if adults are not listening because it’s bad for profits how long will children have to go on speaking out before they are heard
Institutions have been particularly prone to abuse because their occupants are largely cut off from society and are under the power of the staff.
So, I conclude by asking you to do everything you can in your own countries to raise awareness about mandatory reporting and have such laws introduced, encouraging abuse survivors’ groups to report their concerns to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.