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International Conference 2017: From Discovery to Recovery – Online Sexual Abuse of Children

This conference was the first conference to be run over two days.  Day one was very much in the form of a story board giving delegates the chance to learn about the new developments in preventing online abuse of children, and the challenges faced by families and professionals in combating child abuse imagery and grooming of children online. The second day was be held at the BT Tower which was more workshop based.

Day one started with the scene being set by Tink Palmer, CEO of MCF and Chief Constable Simon Bailey, Norfolk Police, NPCC Lead for Child Protection & Abuse Investigation and MCF Trustee.  Delegates heard from a father whose son had been groomed and sexually abused online, about what needs to be different.  Colleagues from across the sector – Internet Matters, UK Safer Internet Centre and PHSE association shared their work in the field of prevention.  We then heard from Lorin LaFave, Breck Foundation about the consequences of online grooming for her son, who was murdered as a direct result.

Moving on to intervention, delegates were given information about how the Child Abuse Image Database is being used to identify and protect children, how the Internet Watch Foundation are working with industry to block and take down images, and how the Lucy Faithfull Foundation are working hard to deter offenders.  The delegates also heard from a non-abusing partner about the impact of her husband being arrested for downloading indecent images of children. 

Having been presented with the issues, day two took delegates on a deeper journey into three different subjects.

  1. Indecent images offenders and their families: Working to prevent further online offending. Facilitated by: Donald Findlater, Independent Consultant and Child Safeguarding Consultant to the Lucy Faithfull Foundation, and Tom Squires, Clinical Manager with the Lucy Faithfull Foundation.
  2. Enabling recovery for children sexually abused online – the art of the possible. Facilitated by: Victoria Green, Director for Strategy and Development, the Marie Collins Foundation, and Christie Knowles, Detective Constable, Avon and Somerset Constabulary.
  3. Addressing the clinical, physical and psychological needs of children who have suffered poly-victimisation in which the use of the internet has played an integral part. Facilitated by: Dr Sharon Cooper, Developmental and Forensic Paediatrician.

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