For more information, call our office number from 9am-5pm on
0203 096 7645
The data behind child abuse
Most sexual abuse isn’t reported, detected or prosecuted. It’s a crime that is usually only witnessed by the abuser and the victim.
In England and Wales
– 9% of adults experienced psychological abuse during childhood.
– 7% suffered physical abuse in childhood
– 7% suffered sexual assault in childhood
– 8% witnessed domestic violence or abuse in the home during childhood
Last year NAPAC answered 8,449 calls and emails on our support line and support email service. There were nearly 90,000 call attempts to NAPAC’s support line during this period (89,680 in 2016/17).
Demand to NAPAC’s support line has risen substantially over the past 3 years, from 55,393 call attempts in 2014/15, to 73,031 in 2015/16 to 89,960 in 2016/17.
NAPAC trained over 400 professionals last year including GPs, safeguarding leads, police, community psychiatric nurses, prison healthcare staff and social workers.
More than one in ten women and 3% of men in England & Wales were sexually assaulted during childhood. (ONS Crime Survey for England + Wales, March 2016)
3% of women and 1% of men suffered sexual assault by rape or penetration (including attempts) during childhood. (ONS Crime Survey for England + Wales, March 2016)
Adult survivors of child abuse are almost twice as likely to have a long-standing illness or disability compared to non-child abuse victims – 28% vs 15% – (ONS Crime Survey for England + Wales, 2016). It is not known whether they had the long-term illness or disability at the time of the child abuse or not, nor whether it was caused by the abuse. ONS Crime Survey, March 2016
The Centre of expertise on child sexual abuse (CSA) has been established to help bring about significant and system-wide change in how child sexual abuse is responded to locally and nationally. CSA Centre
It is estimated that only one in eight victims of sexual abuse come to the attention of statutory authorities (Children’s Commissioner 2015).
Traumatic life experiences can have a significant impact on people’s lives, increasing the risk of poorer physical and mental health and poorer social, educational and criminal justice outcomes. Trauma informed systems can have better outcomes for people affected by trauma (NHS Education for Scotland, May 2017).
One in three children sexually abused by an adult did not tell anyone (Radford, 2011).
Some children did disclose abuse when still young but were not heard or no action was taken (Allnock and Miller, 2013; Lampard and Marsden, 2015).
Over 90% of sexually abused children were abused by someone they knew (Radford, 2011).
There are an estimated minimum of 11 million adult survivors of contact and non-contact child sexual abuse in the UK (Radford et al).
NAPAC receives hundreds of contacts per week from adult survivors of child abuse.
Child sexual abuse costs the UK £3.2bn a year (Radford)
ONS (Office of National Statistics) Abuse during childhood: Findings from the Crime Survey for England and Wales, year ending March 2016 crime survey.
ONS Crime Survey, March 2016
Radford, L. et al (2011) Child abuse and neglect in the UK today NSPCC
Sneddon, H., Wager, N., Allnock, D. Responding sensitively to survivors of childhood abuse University of Bedfordshire with Victim Support, April 2016. Responding sensitively to survivors of childhood abuse
NHS Education Scotland. National Trauma Training Framework – a trauma informed approach
Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) in Wales – ACEs and their impact on health-harming behaviours in the Welsh adult population 13 January 2016
Adverse Childhood Experience (ACE) Resilience Report by Public Health Wales, 18 January 2018. People who have experienced abuse, neglect and other adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) such as living with domestic violence during their childhood are at much greater risk of mental illness throughout life, but community support can offer protection. Sources of resilience and their moderating relationships with harms from adverse childhood experiences
Allnock, D and Miller, P. (2013) No one noticed, no one heard NSPCC
Lampard, K. and Marsden, E. (2015) Themes and lessons learned from NHS investigations into matters relating to Jimmy Savile Independent report for the Secretary of State for Health
Children’s Commissioner (November 2015) Protecting children from harm: a critical assessment of child sexual abuse in the family network in England and priorities for action
Ainscough, C. and Toon, K. (2000) Breaking Free Workbook – Practical help for survivors of child sexual abuse Sheldon Press, London. (For suggestions of individual and group exercises).
Gilbert, P. and Proctor, S. Compassionate Mind Training for People with High Shame and Self Criticism: Overview and Pilot Study of a Group Therapy Approach in Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy 13, 353-379 (2006) Wiley (free to download at http://self-compassion.org/wp-content/uploads/publications/Gilbert.Procter.pdf )
Herman, J.L. (1992) Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence. New York, Basic Books
Mendelsohn, M. et al, (2011) The Trauma Recovery Group: A Guide for Practitioners, New York, The Guildford Press
van der Kolk, B. (2014) The Body Keeps the Score, Penguin Books
Winnicott, D.W (2000, first published in 1964) The Child, the Family and the Outside World Penguin Psychology
NAPAC faces significant and growing demand for its services to survivors – donating to NAPAC means reaching more survivors with the help and support they need.