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13 March 2020 | Podcasts | Article by Alan Collins

HJ Talks About Abuse: Hugh James Abuse Conference 2020

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The annual abuse conference run by Hugh James and the NSPCC took place on 13 February 2020 in our office in Two Central Square, Cardiff.

The abuse conference is an opportunity to bring together a whole range of service providers who assist survivors of sexual abuse so thoughts, expertise and opinions can be shared to make the experience for survivors better.

This year focussed on a range of issues, from the definition of “Positions of Trust” in the Sexual Offences Act 2003 to support services for survivors who have found themselves in trouble with the law, but one important issue which came starkly into focus were opportunities to stop child abuse before it had occurred.

Whilst this might seem an incalculably difficult task, insights provided by Professor Bisson into the impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences in childhood on an adult in later life demonstrated that focus towards healing those who have had these experiences could assist in curving trends in the future.

Sam Barker of Hugh James spoke about the issue of consent in civil proceedings for compensation arising out of childhood sexual abuse. Whilst this seemed a nonsense to many in the audience, it is an unfortunate reality that consent is more often being used in a case where an abuser has been convicted of a sexual offence, but a lack of consent is not an element of that offending.

In today’s podcast, Alan and Sam discuss these issues further and welcome any thoughts from listeners.

We encourage anyone who has concerns about sexual abuse to get in touch. You can contact Alan Collins at [email protected].

Author bio

Alan Collins is one of the best known and most experienced solicitors in the field of child abuse litigation and has acted in many high profile cases, including the Jimmy Savile and Haut de la Garenne abuse scandals.  Alan has represented interested parties before public inquiries including the Independent Jersey Care Inquiry, and IICSA (Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse).

Internationally, Alan works in Australia, South East Asia, Uganda, Kenya, and California representing clients in high profile sexual abuse cases. Alan also spoke at the Third Regional Workshop on Justice for Children in East Asia and the Pacific in Bangkok hosted by Unicef and HCCH (Hague Conference on Private International Law).

Disclaimer: The information on the Hugh James website is for general information only and reflects the position at the date of publication. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be treated as such. If you would like to ensure the commentary reflects current legislation, case law or best practice, please contact the blog author.

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