Fresh Start Foundation
Victim to Survivor to Thriver

Support, Advice & Info.Tel: 0300 999 2017  info@freshstartfoundation.co.uk

Survivors call for action to find Scotland’s missing victims ahead of historic abuse inquiry

Dave Sharp, survivor and spokesperson for SAFE, is campaigning for justice

Untitled

 

SURVIVORS of historic sexual abuse are today making a plea for more to be done to find Scotland’s missing abuse victims.

Seek and Find Everyone Abused in Childhood, also known as SAFE, has made the call to action with only two weeks left before the formal inquiry into historic abuse starts taking evidence.

SAFE, a group of survivors who have set aside their own time and money to campaign on this issue, want to send a message to all those survivors who are too afraid to speak out.

Survivor and spokesperson for SAFE, Dave Sharp, said: “We understand that victims are looking for like-minded people to connect with. Survivors are looking for people who understand their vulnerabilities and uncertainties and SAFE wants to help them find a path to justice and to have their voice heard.”

Sharp explained that just before last Christmas John Swinney, the Cabinet Secretary with responsibility for the abuse inquiry, said that there are roughly 2500 survivors of historical institutional child abuse in Scotland but he wants to know what he has done to find them.

“It’s so important that as many people as possible come forward and we need the help of politicians but also of communities across the country to make that happen,” he added.

“Not only is this the last chance for many old people who have suffered for years to have their voice heard, it is also the best time for survivors to come forward because there are more professional bodies than ever before to help and that is the message we want to give out.

“Some of us met with the police earlier this year and we were assured that they have the resources and the manpower to deal with survivors, and to pass them onto organisations that can walk with them through the process of having their voice heard and seeking justice.”

Sharp’s calls were backed by Mary Robertson, a survivor of family and in-care abuse.

She said: “Thousands of people are still living in shame and fear that their secret will get out. The shame is not theirs to bear. When I first disclosed and felt believed a great burden was lifted from me. I started to look people in the eye, when previously I was scared and felt I had a huge label on my head. Future generations should not have to suffer with the shame like I did for many years.”

A spokesperson for the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry said: “The Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry has been engaging with survivors through private sessions for many months and is also taking evidence from others with valuable information. It is currently investigating 69 institutions as part of its initial investigations.

“As Lady Smith stated at the preliminary hearing, we will not be sharing the numbers of those contacting the inquiry on an ongoing basis. We have been pleased with the response to date but, importantly, as work of the inquiry continues, we still want to hear from people who have been affected.

“We would encourage anyone who has relevant information, whether they have been abused themselves or know others who have, to get in touch.”

SAFE’s campaign to find Scotland’s missing voices was also given full backing by leading abuse charity Wellbeing Scotland.

Wellbeing’s chief executive Janine Rennie said: “John Swinney referred to over 2000 people abused in care and Police Scotland have mentioned a figure closer to 5000. The Inquiry has seen extremely low numbers come forward in comparison to that figure and therefore cannot be seen as reflecting the scale or impact of abuse in Scotland.”

The Scottish Government said that ministers meet survivors and their representatives regularly, and that, where permission was given, those involved are being updated on progress made.

A Scottish Government spokesperson said: “We have worked incredibly closely with survivors, particularly in recent years as we have established one of the widest-ranging public inquiries Scotland has ever seen and transformed the support available to adults who were abused as children.

“Ministers meet survivors and their representatives regularly. We carried out a large-scale consultation, which allowed people to take part online, in person at numerous events across the country and via a special phone line and received responses from across Scotland and abroad. And where permission for further contact was given, we have kept those involved updated on the progress in this area.”

A spokesperson for the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry said: “The Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry has been engaging with survivors through private sessions for many months and is also taking evidence from others with valuable information. It is currently investigating 69 institutions as part of its initial investigations.

“As Lady Smith stated at the preliminary hearing, we will not be sharing the numbers of those contacting the Inquiry on an ongoing basis. We have been pleased with the response to date but, importantly, as work of the Inquiry continues, we still want to hear from people who have been affected. We would encourage anyone who has relevant information, whether they have been abused themselves or know others who have, to get in touch.”

Anyone wishing to contact the Inquiry can do so using the following methods

The Inquiry also keeps its website up to date with news and information about its progress and rules. The website address is www.childabuseinquiry.scot

We Thank the  Source of the  original story which has been republished on this site.

http://www.thenational.scot/news/15289768.Survivors_call_for_action_to_find_Scotland_s_missing_victims_ahead_of_historic_abuse_inquiry/

Children still not reporting sexual exploitation, NSPCC warns

Child sexual exploitation is still ‘woefully under-reported’ in the UK, the NSPCC has warned.

The charity said many young victims don’t understand that what is happening to them is grooming and exploitation, because offenders use manipulative tactics.

It is now calling on concerned adults to raise the alarm if they suspect a young person might be in danger.

Nearly 2,000 of the country’s most vulnerable youngsters have been helped by the Protect and Respect service it set up in 2011.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 11:  A Police officer stands outside New Scotland Yard after a report into the sexual allegations of the late TV star Jimmy Savile was released on January 11, 2013 in London, England. The report  by the Metropolitan police and NSPCC on Jimmy Savile gives details the scale of his sexual abuse of children from 1955 to 2009.  (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

Adults are being told to stay aware (Picture: Getty Images)

NSPCC Chief Executive Peter Wanless said: ‘Young people will not always recognise that they are being exploited and treated as property.

‘We want every child to be able to spot exploitation for what it is and, if they find themselves in danger, know that it is categorically not their fault.

‘Our Protect and Respect service is showing them how to spot potential abusers, find their way out of an exploitative cycle and help them on the road to recovery.

‘We are imploring any adult who suspects a child is being exploited to pick up the phone and call the NSPCC Helpline.

‘This abuse is sadly still woefully under-reported and, for us to help these children, we need people to speak up.’

Mandatory Credit: Photo by KEITH MEATHERINGHAM/DOBSON A/REX/Shutterstock (4891334h)nGiant sand art footprintsnGiant footprint sand art created for NSPCC campaign on Filey beach, Yorkshire, Britain - 01 Jul 2015nGiant footprints have been created on Filey beach in Yorkshire for the NSPCC, to inspire the nation to leave a lasting legacy for children. Created by world-renowned British sand artist Jamie Wardley, the six footprints represent the one sixth of the NSPCC's funding that comes from gifts in wills. Jamie spent around 5 hours creating the six 3D anamorphic footprints with the finished design measuring over 60 metres in depth and 20 metres in width.n

The warning comes from the NSPCC (Picture: REX/Shutterstock)

Launched in November 2011, Protect and Respect is open to children and teenagers aged 10 to 19, and works with agencies such as the police and social services to identify and support youngsters who have been sexually exploited or are at risk of falling victim.

 

The services has directly helped 1,866 children and young people so far, including 1,493 kids between the ages of 10 and 15.

Earlier this year ministers unveiled plans for a new £40million attack on child exploitation.

The drive includes the launch of a new centre of expertise and plans to create a new national database of missing people.

http://metro.co.uk/2017/05/13/children-still-not-reporting-sexual-exploitation-nspcc-warns-6634595/

Many Thanks To The Original News Source for this story.

Celtic Boys Club founder at centre of fresh child sexual abuse claims

BBC Scotland investigation alleges Jim Torbett abused boys during two stints at football club from mid-60s to 1996

Fresh allegations of child sexual abuse have been made against the founder of Celtic Boys Club and a former Rangers youth coach.

A BBC Scotland investigation claims Jim Torbett sexually abused boys during two stints at Celtic Boys Club from the mid-60s to 1996.

Torbett was jailed for two years in 1998 for abusing three former Celtic Boys Club players, including the former Scotland international Alan Brazil, between 1967-74.

Alleged victims told a BBC Scotland programme, which aired on Monday night, that Torbett was allowed to return to the club around 1980 despite being sacked when abuse allegations surfaced in 1974.

It is alleged Torbett continued abusing boys in his second stint at the famed Celtic feeder club, where he coached until 1996 when more abuse allegations were made against him.

Torbett’s lawyer told the BBC he “vehemently denies these completely false allegations. Clearly allegations of this kind must remain in the hands of the police and due process of the law must be followed here.”

The BBC investigation also made fresh claims about the former Hibernian and Rangers coach Gordon Neely, who died in 2014.

The programme, Football Abuse: the Ugly Side of the Beautiful Game, claimed Neely was sacked from Hibernian when allegations of abuse surfaced but the police were not informed.

He then joined Rangers where it is claimed he began abusing boys there. Rangers also sacked him over alleged abuse. The club told the BBC it informed the police.

In a statement, Hibernian said it was “saddened to be told that personnel at the club at the time were allegedly made aware of concerns about Neely and, again allegedly, did not contact the police.

“[This] is something which current policies and practices would prevent from happening today.”

Jon Cleland, an alleged victim of Neely, said he was subjected to 18 months of serious sexual abuse when he was 11. He told BBC Scotland: “He said I looked like I had had an injury … then he asked me to lean over a desk, and that’s when I was raped. At that age, I hadn’t a clue what was going on.”

The former Hutchinson Vale FC player said he gave up football to escape the abuse. He told the programme he was raped about 10 times over 18 months.

Asked if he had been able to tell anyone, he said: “No. I couldn’t have possibly at that age. I thought it was my fault. I thought I had done something wrong.”

Kenny Campbell, now 44, alleged that he was abused by Torbett over four years after joining Celtic’s under-14s team in 1986.

He said Torbett took a special interest in him and won the trust of his parents. Campbell told BBC Scotland: “Pretty quickly he became a hero of mine. In my mind he was doing good things [for me].

“I’d have jumped in front of a bus for him if he had asked me, guaranteed. So it was as if he had a hold over us.”

He said Torbett began the abuse while he was sitting on the couch with him one night and that this was the beginning of up to four years of sexual abuse, which carried on even after he was signed by the senior Celtic team.

The young player did not tell anyone. “I just thought it was natural. I just thought that was what happened,” he said.

In a statement, Celtic FC said the club was fully committed to safeguarding children. Rangers said it understood Neely was dismissed and the police were informed at the time. The club added that “all employees adhered to the strictest codes of conduct” and that it would “always cooperate fully with the authorities”.

Stewart Regan, the chief executive of the Scottish FA, said an independent review into allegations of historical child sexual abuse in Scottish football was under way.

“We await its findings,” he added. “The latest allegations are a matter for the investigatory authority, Police Scotland. We would urge anyone who has suffered abuse to come forward using the dedicated, confidential NSPCC 24-hour helpline 0800 023 2642, directly to the police on 101 or via email to the Scottish FA at childrenswellbeing@scottishfa.co.uk.”

DCI Sarah Taylor, of the national child abuse investigation unit at Police Scotland, said: “Child abuse is incredibly difficult for people to revisit and to talk about. Our officers are highly specialist and are trained to deal with all reports sensitively.

“We would ask anyone who has been the victim of abuse, or has information about potential abuse to contact us. We will listen and we will investigate and our first priority will be to ensure that there are no children at risk now.

“If you have suffered sexual abuse, or if you can assist this investigation or you know anyone who may have been a victim then please call Police Scotland on 101. Or you can call the NSPCC helpline on 0800 023 2642.”