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St Helena : Lucy Faithfull Foundation statement in response to media coverage of ongoing work to protect children in St Helena
Submitted by Saint Helena Herald (Public Relations Information Office) 19.07.2014 (Article Archived on 23.08.2014)

The child protection charity The Lucy Faithfull Foundation is urging more responsible reporting of child sexual abuse issues and the efforts to address such abuse following the sensationalist approach taken this week by media outlets regarding St Helena.

Lucy Faithfull Foundation statement in response to media coverage of ongoing work to protect children in St Helena

The child protection charity The Lucy Faithfull Foundation is urging more responsible reporting of child sexual abuse issues and the efforts to address such abuse following the sensationalist approach taken this week by media outlets regarding St Helena. The Foundation condemns such sensationalist editorial lines, given the potential negative effect that such coverage is likely to have on efforts to tackle and prevent abuse.

The challenges faced by St Helena are not exclusive to the Island. Child sexual abuse is an international problem, and while its precise manifestation is influenced by local factors, it should be a concern, and a priority, for all nations around the world.

Child sexual abuse is a complex problem, as we know only too well in the UK. A community working to address it, and not simply talk about it, is not assisted by sensationalist media reporting which is only likely to increase people’s reluctance to come forward, talk about the problems and deal with the issues. Child sexual abuse can only be effectively tackled through state and voluntary agencies working together and with the whole community with respect, sensitivity, trust and confidentiality.

The Foundation prepared a confidential report for the Department for International Development and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in May last year. It was subsequently shared with the St Helena Government. The Foundation did not share the report with the media. An action plan is currently in place in St Helena which workers from the Foundation are helping to implement.

18 July 2014

 

This article is the Property and Copyright of Saint Helena Herald.

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