Sexual abuse

Sexual abuse of children or young people is any act that involves the child or young person in any activity for the sexual gratification of another person, whether or not it is claimed that the child or young person either consented or assented.

Sexual abuse involves forcing, enticing or coercing a child or young person to take part in sexual activities, whether or not the child or young person is aware of what is happening.

The activities may involve physical contact, including penetrative or non-penetrative acts.

This abuse may include non-contact activities, such as involving children and young people in looking at, or in the production of indecent images or in watching sexual activities; using sexual language towards a child or young person; or encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways.

Stop It Now! Scotland

Stop It Now! Scotland is part of a child protection charity that believes that the key to preventing sexual abuse is awareness among parents and community members.

The Stop It Now! website provides information on support services for survivors of online child sexual abuse or grooming.

Stop It Now! also provides support services to individuals and their families with problematic sexual thoughts and those who may be at risk of sexual offending, including those who are under investigation for internet offences.

The Upstream Project

Upstream is an online resource that enables adults in Scotland to prevent child sexual abuse. It provides tools and support for anyone who is looking for advice on protecting children from child sexual abuse.

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Key resources

Report Resource

Sibling sexual abuse: A knowledge and practice overview

Year: 2021 | Topic: Sexual abuse | Author: Peter Yates and Stuart Allardyce
Sexual abuse involving child siblings is thought to be the most common form of intra-familial child sexual abuse, perhaps up to three time…
Guidance ResourceReport ResourceResearch Resource

Protecting children from harm

Year: 2015 | Topic: Child protection, Child sexual exploitation (CSE), Sexual abuse | Author: Children’s Commissioner for England
A critical assessment of child sexual abuse in the family network in England and priorities for action.
Guidance ResourceReport ResourceResearch Resource

The Traumatic Impact of Child Sexual Abuse: A Conceptualization - published 1985

Year: 2018 | Topic: Child protection, Child sexual exploitation (CSE), Sexual abuse | Author: David Finkelhor, Ph.D., and Angela Browne, Ph.D.
A framework is proposed for a more systematic understanding of the effects of child sexual abuse.
Guidance ResourceReport ResourceResearch Resource

Keeping Children Safe - Information disclosure about child sexual offenders

Year: 2014 | Topic: Child protection, Child sexual exploitation (CSE), Sexual abuse | Author: NSPCC
Community disclosure is now running in your area. This will provide a formal route for the public to directly raise child protection concerns…