Information on the child's file suggests they have experienced sexual abuse
This section refers to children who are in Local Authority care or who are open to Children’s services, possibly on a Child Protection or Child in Need Plan, or possibly in an Early Help capacity. The children this section refers to have information in their file that is highly indicative of child sexual abuse but have never been spoken to about this.
Hassan is 16, he has been in foster care since the age of 8 and has had a number of different placements during this time.
Hassan’s file references concerns that his Father was known to be a Person Posing a Risk to Children (PPRC). File information says that Hassan became very withdrawn when he was approximately 4 years old and staff at Hassan’s school noticed he would often sit in the corner of the room in silence. Hassan’s first foster carer noticed that he was reluctant to go to sleep and was very afraid of the dark.
When Hassan started senior school he often got into fights with other children. When he was 12 he locked another boy in the toilet at school and touched the boy’s genital area over his clothing. Hassan did not receive any support around this at the time and nobody has spoken to him about it since.
What is the purpose of your discussion?
The purpose of talking to the child in this situation is to ensure the child has the opportunity to talk about anything they may have experienced, including sexual abuse. Assumptions may have been made by others that the child has been given the opportunity to talk about potential sexual abuse. As more and more professionals are involved in the child’s life, it becomes increasingly more likely that each one assumes someone else must have spoken to the child. However, this is rarely the case and, all too often, nobody has ever given the child the opportunity to tell them they have been sexually abused.