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Offences against Children: Criminal Investigation

Question for Home Office

UIN HL431, tabled on 14 January 2020

To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they have taken since Operation Augusta was launched in 2003 to ensure that child sexual abuse allegations are properly investigated.

Answered on

28 January 2020

Child sexual abuse is an appalling crime and that this Government is committed to tackling it. It is important that we look at what has gone wrong in the past and work tirelessly to ensure we do not repeat those mistakes.

Since Operation Augusta we have taken significant steps to transform the way police respond to these horrific crimes. We have prioritised child sexual abuse as a national threat and we have worked with the College of Policing to deliver a package of measures to ensure the police are better placed to respond to child protection issues, including enhanced coverage of vulnerability in the curriculum for the Police Constable Degree Apprenticeship, and the development of a Public Protection and Safeguarding Leaders course.

The Home Office is continuing to provide significant investment to initiatives and activities that will support the police to continue transformation in their response to child sexual abuse, particularly in areas of disruption, prevention and early intervention. Last year, we announced that we will be investing a further £30m in law enforcement capabilities to ensure offenders are no longer able to prey on society’s most vulnerable.

The government will go further and publish a comprehensive national strategy to tackle all forms of Child Sexual Abuse in early 2020 which will build on our action to tackle all child sexual abuse and bring horrific predators to justice.

Our new strategy will set out our whole system response to tackling child sexual abuse and how we will work across government, law enforcement, safeguarding partners and industry to root out offending, protect victims and help victims and survivors rebuild their lives.

Answered by

Home Office